Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov

High-tech medicine reaches out to Russian regions

Russia continues to build new perinatal centers. Today, there are about a hundred of them already. However, the problem of providing high-tech care not only in central regions, but also in provinces, is quite serious. To solve it, a state program was adopted within the scope of the national project "Health" to take medicine to regions.

In early January 2014, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said that before the end of 2016, 32 perinatal centers equipped with modern equipment would appear in 30 regions of Russia. To date, there are 24 of such centers that have been built at the expense of the state. Twenty-two of them are located in regions. However, it is obvious that this is not enough for such a huge country as Russia.

"I believe that the construction of such centers in the regions of the Russian Federation is of paramount importance. It is not only big cities like Moscow and St. Petersburg but also smaller cities and towns in the regions of the country that should receive high-tech medical care. Each subject of the Federation should have its own large perinatal center. On the one hand, it will make high-tech medical care more affordable, and on the other hand, if they are staffed by highly skilled professionals, then, I'm more than sure, it will be possible to reduce maternal, infant and perinatal mortality. This is a very serious step," international expert on reproductive health in the Russian Federation, obstetrician, Boris Lordkipanidze said in an interview with Pravda.Ru.

Yet, according to the international expert, even such an important endeavor comes across obstacles. "There are people, who condemn this step of the government. They claim that the budget carries high costs and so on, but really, results will certainly be positive," he said.

There are real numbers to confirm Lordkipanidze's words. According to the government, infant and maternal mortality rates have decreased significantly in the regions that have their own perinatal centers. It was decided to continue the program. One of such centers of modern high-tech medicine will appear in the Chelyabinsk region.

The construction of the center will cost 2.3 billion rubles, of which almost 469 million will be assigned from the regional treasury and 1.8 billion rubles - from the Federal Compulsory Medical Insurance Fund. The new center will provide high quality care for mothers and children of the South Urals.

The new center will be able to accommodate 130 patients. As part of the perinatal center, 12 individual ancestral halls will be arranged, a postpartum mother-and-child unit, a neonatal intensive care unit will be organized as well. The center will be located on the territory of the Medical Township (Medgorodok) in Chelyabinsk.

Currently, in the Chelyabinsk region, birthing mothers receive care in the central maternity hospital (basic repairs at the hospital finished on February 7th). Acting Governor Boris Dubrovsky personally inspected the work of the renovated hospital on February 24. Just a month ago, the building was in a state of "profound repairs." As Mr. Dubrovsky noticed then, "we are still on square one." It was then when the head of the Chelyabinsk region instructed to complete the work within a month and promised that he would come personally to see how the process was going on.

Today, the hospital works at full capacity; mothers and their babies receive necessary assistance on a qualitatively new level.

Chief physician Yuri Semyonov said that as many as 100 babies were born at hospital after it started working again. "We work at full capacity, as we did  before closing for repairs. During the implementation of the healthcare modernization program, everything has changed. The conditions for patients to stay at hospital have improved, every ward now has hot and cold tap water, we have more shower rooms. All intensive care units have been repaired, including the unit for children. It previously had six beds, now it has 12," Yuri Semyonov said.

The material and technical base of the perinatal center has seriously improved as well. As many as 100 million rubles have been assigned since 2011 to purchase high-tech medical equipment. Respiratory systems, anesthetic equipment, the equipment to monitor the condition of patients have been purchased. There is an ER vehicle too.

Of course, the renovated hospital is only a part of measures to improve the quality of care for young mothers and their children. Great hopes and expectations have been laid on the construction of a new perinatal center. Specialists say that the new center will be able to take up to seven thousand births a year, which is twice as much as the current figure.

Acting Governor Boris Dubrovsky said that the first tranche of 936 million rubles has already arrived at the regional treasury.

"This is indeed a significant event for the region. Generally, the strategy of the construction of not only this, but other centers was launched at the time when Governor Pyotr Sumin was in office. I am confident that the current government under the leadership of Boris Dubrovsky will continue the important initiatives. I just want to emphasize that this is a very good team. I have to say that the Chelyabinsk region already has experience in the construction and commissioning of such major medical centers. In the region, there is, for example, a major cardiac center, and the creation of such a large perinatal center is simply necessary," State Duma deputy Dmitry Vyatkin told Pravda.Ru.

Ekaterina Polyanskaya


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