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Crisis in Ukraine

MedicalConflict and war
After weeks of speculation, Russian forces launched attacks on multiple cities in late February 2022. Millions of Ukrainians are now at risk.


Refugees and displaced persons
More than one million people have been forced from their homes by the conflict, escaping across borders to neighbouring countries. It is estimated that more than five million people will be displaced during this conflict. 

As the war in Ukraine continues, our teams are responding to a humanitarian crisis.

We are providing medical care to people who have been caught up in, or have been forced to flee, the fighting. Our teams are donating emergency supplies to hospitals and providing vital training to their staff. 

There is full-scale warfare in many areas, making movements difficult, dangerous or simply impossible.

We are responding in various parts of the country, based on where our assistance is needed and will have a significant impact.

On February 24, 2022, Russia launched a large-scale military operation in Ukraine that rapidly escalated into a war across most of the country. We are expanding our medical and humanitarian response to the evolving needs.

Access to health care has been difficult for people living along the contact line of the conflict in eastern Ukraine since fighting intensified in the region in 2014.

Prior to the escalation of war across Ukraine in February 2022, MSF ran a range of activities, including programs for tuberculosis (TB) and HIV care. We started new projects in Donetsk and Luhansk, while continuing to support the national COVID-19 response. Now we have had to halt normal activities and are carrying out an emergency response.

How we're helping in Ukraine

As of November 15, 2022, there are approximately 116 international MSF staff and 685 Ukrainian staff working across Ukraine, with more joining the team every day. They work as medical staff (surgeons, doctors, nurses); psychologists; logistics and administration; and management. We currently have teams based in Apostolove, Dnipro, Ivano-Frankivsk, Kharkiv, Kyiv, Lyman, Lviv, Mykolaiv, Odesa, Poltava, Pokrovsk, Kochubeivka, Kostiantynivka, Kryvyi Rih, Uzhhorod, Kropyvnytskyi, Vinnytsia, Zaporizhzhia and Zhytomyr.

Since February 24, MSF has brought more than 800 metric tons of medical and relief supplies into Ukraine to support hospitals, health centers, and displaced people.

Medical evacuation trains

On April 1, 2022, MSF completed its first medical train referral, taking nine patients who had been wounded in or near the besieged city of Mariupol from hospitals in Zaporizhzhia to hospitals in Lviv. They were transported on a two-carriage train equipped as a basic hospital ward, accompanied by a team of nine MSF medical staff. 

We are now using a larger and more highly medicalized train. So far, we have completed 77 referral trips, mostly taking patients from overburdened Ukrainian hospitals close to active warzones to Ukrainian hospitals with more capacity that are further from active warzones. Among the people we've evacuated are seriously wounded patients from Kharkiv and babies and children from an orphanage in Zaporizhzhia. A total of 2,607 hospital patients have been medically evacuated to date, along with their family members, in addition to 78 orphans. About 28 percent of the patients have been violence-related trauma cases. Further medical referrals are planned as urgent requests from hospitals in the east continue.

Treating Tuberculosis and Hepatitis C 

MSF runs a hepatitis C program in Mykolaiv region, providing treatment with two effective direct-acting antivirals – daclatasvir and sofosbuvir – as well as diagnostic tests, patient support, education and counselling services. Some patients are co-infected with HIV or on opioid substitution therapy; others are healthcare workers infected with the virus. 

At the end of 2017, MSF handed over care of patients with drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) in the penitentiary system in Dnipro and Donetsk. In order to ensure continuity of care, a transfer plan was put in place for each patient, including the provision of medication to enable them to finish their treatment. MSF is also now working to open a new program in Zhytomyr to treat DR-TB patients in the general population. 

Find out more about Ukraine