As Ukraine transforms its health system to improve access to high quality health services and increase financial protection for its population, the standardization of care and adoption of evidence-informed practices, including the development of clinical guidelines and protocols, are essential elements on the health system reform path. To support Ukraine in establishing a coherent national guideline development process, WHO has conducted a situational assessment of knowledge, current usage and potential barriers to the uptake of evidence-based medicine among Ukrainian health professionals. The assessment results as well as the clinical guidelines development procedure and methodology were discussed during 3 webinars for health workers and the expert community in Ukraine in February 2021.
“Standardization of medical care is one of the most highly essential factors in providing quality medical services in Ukraine,” said Dr Jarno Habicht, WHO Representative and Head of the WHO Country Office in Ukraine. “The work on the clinical guidelines development process is extremely important as it allows for using evidence-based practices and making informed decisions to achieve the best possible individual or collective health outcomes.”
As part of the Biennial Collaborative Agreement between WHO/Europe and the Government of Ukraine, WHO has mobilized international and national expertise to conduct a situational assessment of the current state of clinical guidelines application in Ukraine and develop a framework for their design and adoption in the country. Both activities aim to establish a national guideline development process in line with best practices, taking into account the country context. The latter should be consistent with current health system elements and aims to facilitate the creation of a structure and platform for interaction to promote the evidence-based, credible and unbiased guidelines development process in Ukraine.
In addition, highly structured and systematic approaches for the development of trustworthy, evidence-based clinical guidelines and protocols will boost implementation of the Medical Guarantees Programme in Ukraine, introduced in the country in 2017 as part of its health care reform. The latter allows patients to receive some specialized priority medical services for free and reimbursement for some medicines under the Affordable Medicines Programme with an overall aim to improve the health and well-being of the Ukrainian population, reduce health inequalities and out-of-pocket payments, and achieve universal health coverage. The latter was designed with the support from WHO to the Ministry of Health of Ukraine and other national counterparts.