According to the IDF-2021 Diabetes Atlas, there were 2.3 million people with diabetes in Ukraine at the beginning of 2022, of which 230,000 are those receiving insulin.

War, displacement, and the daily struggle with diabetes are now a double threat to thousands of Ukrainians. It's hard to even imagine how many lives the horrors of war have taken. People with diabetes have found themselves in a variety of situations Today in Ukraine, because of the war with Russia, there are about 8 million internal refugees who have moved to the western regions of Ukraine. Millions have fled the country. Fortunately, our people with diabetes are provided with everything they need in all European countries, and our friends from the Diabetes Associations of the IDF members come to help.

The situation for internal migrants is much more difficult. Huge difficulties have arisen in the occupied territories. And we can't even imagine what people with diabetes experienced in bomb shelters...
Our people with diabetes today defend the homeland both in the ranks of territorial defense and on the front lines, "volunteering" in all areas, supplying first aid kits to the front lines, snacks to bomb shelters, new equipment to children's endocrinology departments. Work in the Branches of the Ukrainian Diabetes Federation has intensified, and new diabetic associations are being created.

"February 24, the beginning of the war...Grief, tears, deaths of children, old people, women, our brave soldiers who stood up to defend their country. In this difficult stage of our life, the life of our beloved Ukraine, we all at once matured, became wiser, stronger, more attentive to each other. People with diabetes were left alone with their problems until they united, helping each other. It was difficult to get insulin, test strips for a glucometer, but there are always people who in peacetime took care of people with diabetes, and in wartime became, "People with a capital letter. Of course, doctors also got involved, for whom their patients are important, they were able to regulate the supply of insulin and finally provide everyone. We are the power! Glory to Ukraine!" Alexander Galaev, director of the Odessa branch of UDF, UDF volunteer since 10 years.

Providing people with diabetes with the essentials

Medical help

The war has deprived people with diabetes of their usual contacts with endocrinologists, who left their post 2 endocrinologists in Chernivtsi, 5 in Kharkiv. In Dnipro, Zaporozhye, everything is in place. In Nikolaev, our heroic doctors work even in a hospital that was partially destroyed due to a direct hit.


There is no shortage of insulin in the country today. Moreover, the prescription fee for insulin during martial law is canceled. The state covers the cost of insulin drugs in full. Short-term interruptions of supply of one or another insulin drug are fixed due to logistics problems and the number of working pharmacies sharply decreased during the first month. The unstable operation of the Internet had a negative impact on the availability of insulin. Unable to guarantee compliance with the temperature regime, UDF flatly refused to receive humanitarian insulin, providing information support (information about working pharmacies and availability of medcines).

Almost 30,000 glucose meters with strips provided for people with diabetes by Direct Relief Foundation were distributed by UDF to cities and villages, to children's hospital emergency rooms in military hospitals and to the ophthalmology clinic, where children with eye wounds were found to have high sugar levels.

TOTAL as of May 31, 2022, Direct Relief's efforts to respond to the crisis in Ukraine have resulted in the delivery of more than 650 tons of emergency medical supplies valued at more than $315 million.

The geography is extensive: volunteers and the Red Cross have even delivered supplies to occupied cities and communities along the line of contact. UkrPochta has been working well for a month now, delivering our heavy parcels across the country, at the request of regional and district hospitals, to territorial social assistance centers, diabetic NGOs, and UDF branches.

"Organizing the logistics of so many emergency goods, is not an easy task even in peacetime, and in times of war, it has become a real challenge. I am glad that despite all the difficulties, we coped and were able to deliver aid to those who needed it, even in the temporarily occupied territories and war zones." Kirill Goncharuk, UDF board member and CheckEye CEO.
Before the war, the region had never received so many glucose meters for adults/ The state provided only for children and pregnant women Adults with diabetes bought the means of self-monitoring at their own expense. The war deprived people with diabetes of their usual contacts with endocrinologists, and the availability of self-monitoring became even more important. They had to switch to an unfamiliar insulin preparation on their own, adjust the dose to an unfamiliar regimen and sometimes a poor diet.

Nadezhda Ivanovna uses the lists prepared on the basis of applications from people with diabetes to form parcels, take them to Novaya Pochta, and stand in line.

In just one month, more than 500 people in the remotest corners of Ukraine received test strips for ONE TOUCH SELECT glucose meters.
The war put an end to endless reforms that were more like patching up holes. Problems are known to be opportunities. A chance has arisen. Drawing on the experience of successful NPD implementation in other countries and the latest technology to build a modern structure of diabetic care. We received a Direct Relief grant to develop and lobby for the NPD. The focus: modular management system of diabetic care, innovative technologies, reliable statistics, prevention.
In 2021, the results of a military diabetes prevalence study conducted in 15 countries were released, the prevalence of diabetes in the military was 9.15%. UDF, in conjunction with a military hospital, began a project titled "Analysis of the Prevalence of Diabetes Mellitus in the Military. Development of Preventive Measures."

Uncontrolled diabetes has increased the number of amputations and people are losing their eyesight due to the inaccessibility of timely diagnosis and treatment. The war has deprived many of them of family and hope for help from their loved ones. The UDF in conjunction with the Department of Palliative and Hospice Medicine at the P.L. Shupik National University of Health Sciences has taken the lead in this area. Shupyk P.L. National University of Health Care have undertaken to create the first specialized diabetic palliative care unit to provide care for this category of people with diabetes at a health care institution in Kiev.
Innovative technologies based on the work of artificial intelligence (AI) are a real opportunity to avoid complications caused by diabetes. CheckEye artificial intelligence can help people with diabetes detect early signs of diabetic retinopathy.

War has deprived people with diabetes of familiar contact with endocrinologists They do not have access to necessary diagnostics, including diabetic retinopathy (DR).

Early diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy is the goal of the project. Ukrainian MedTech startup CheckEye, director Kirill Goncharuk, a member of the UDF board, is working with the Ukrainian Diabetes Federation to conduct screening in the Chernivtsi region using a cloud-based platform for DR diagnosis based on artificial intelligence and machine learning. The platform, by analyzing photographs of the patient's ocular fundus, makes diagnosis available to thousands of IDPs and people in remote rural areas. Already today, the CheckEye algorithm is 84% accurate in detecting retinopathy. Training of the algorithm is continuing uninterrupted; the goal is to reach an accuracy rate of over 90%, which would exceed the accuracy of expert evaluations.
The spring of 2022 is not like any other spring in our lives. Because everyone, even the smallest person in Ukraine lives in great fear. It's hot in Kharkov, the shelling hasn't stopped for 100 days. In this total darkness Galina Mikhno - director of the UDF branch - and her team presented the children with rays of sunshine. On June 1, on Children's Day, the famous Kharkov Puppet Theater performed plays for children in the villages of Valkovsky district by their invitation. Children, laughing with all their hearts, for a couple of hours were able to forget about the horrors of bombing. It turned out a real holiday with gifts, sweets and toys, surprise
11 OCT. / 2022