Today, twenty Ukrainian health care workers completed post-amputation rehabilitation training in Tallinn. Designed to cover the principles and possibilities of modern rehabilitation, this training programme will improve the expertise and know-how of teams providing supplementary treatment at hospitals in Kyiv and Zhytomyr.
There are an estimated 25,000-50,000 people in Ukraine who have lost a limb as a result of the war. Among them, the proportion of civilians is very high, as Ukraine is one of the most mined countries in the world. This is why increasing the availability and quality of rehabilitation programmes in Ukraine has become a priority for Estonian development cooperation.
“No country is ready to deal with such big social and health care challenges alone. In Ukraine, there is a lack of rehabilitation centres and qualified specialists to provide both physical and psychological help to amputees,” explained Margus Gering,Head of the Ukrainian Cooperation and Development Programme at ESTDEV.
“The need for training for rehabilitation teams in Ukrainian hospitals has increased, and Estonia is able to provide Ukraine with this type of support. Together with the Ministry of Social Affairs, we created a practical training programme for hospitals in Kyiv and Zhytomyr to train entire rehabilitation teams. The entire team, from psychiatrists to prosthetists, must learn how to work together to ensure patients can live a full life,” added Gering.
The rehabilitation teams from eight Ukrainian hospitals, including doctors, nurses, occupational therapists, prosthetists, psychiatrists and psychologists, participated in the training.
“The rehabilitation process starts even before the prosthesis is placed. When a person loses a leg, they are in shock, and that kind of grief needs to be overcome. Therefore, we must involve specialists from a wide range of specialities, including mental health specialists and caregivers, to help patients get back to a productive life,” said Kaupo Ole, the head of the rehabilitation clinic at Ida-Tallinn Central Hospital, in an interview with ERR.
As part of the two-week study programme, Ukrainian health care workers underwent theoretical training at Tallinn Health Care College. They also received practical training at the Northern Estonian Regional Hospital and East Tallinn Central Hospital and made study visits to Tartu University Clinic and Pärnu Hospital.
According to Siret Piirsalu, head of the Lifelong Learning Centre at Tallinn Health Care College, several training projects have been carried out in cooperation with Estonian health care providers over the years, and many are ready to contribute to the training of Ukrainian health care workers.
A total of 40 Ukrainian health care workers will be trained by the end of 2023 within the framework of the project funded by ESTDEV. The project has three main goals: provide training focused on the rehabilitation of amputated lower limbs, create a modern rehabilitation centre in Ukraine and the development of rehabilitation study programmes for Ukrainian universities.
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Estonian Centre for International Development is a government foundation that manages and implements Estonia’s participation in international development cooperation and humanitarian aid projects, with the aim of increasing Estonia’s contribution to global security and sustainable development.