This health science resource page is provided by the Geneva Centre of Humanitarian Studies and aims to inform governments, humanitarian organisations, our students and media representatives of the latest research papers on the health situation of those fleeing Ukraine or trapped in the country. This page includes systematic reviews and primary and secondary analysis and it also refers to online resources from reputable organisations where updated information is published.

The Centre is also hosting regular webinars on the Ukraine crisis and the health implications of those affected, in collaboration the Lancet Migration European Regional Hub. The most recent webinar on March 30, 2022, can be viewed here.

MAY 2022

A joint international collaboration to address the inevitable mental health crisis in Ukraine

13.05.2022 – Nature Medicine

Authors: Wei Bai, Hong Cai, Sha Sha, Chee H. Ng, Afzal Javed, Jair Mari, Zhaohui Su, Naotaka Shinfuku, Yu-Tao Xiang

On 24 February 2022, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, marking a major escalation in hostilities. More than 4 million people have fled Ukraine into neighboring countries, causing Europe’s largest refugee crisis since the Second World War. The mental health problems and challenges among refugees and other populations affected by the war have received little attention, compared to political boycotts and economic sanctions. The rapid escalation of a mental health crisis warrants urgent attention.


Unified European support framework to sustain the HIV cascade of care for people living with HIV including in displaced populations of war-struck Ukraine

13.05.2022 – The Lancet HIV

Authors: Marta Vasylyev MD, Agata Skrzat-Klapaczyńska, Jose I Bernardino et al

Ukraine is one of the countries in Europe most affected by HIV. The escalation of open war on the European continent has affected HIV care in Ukraine in an unprecedented way. Treating physicians in Europe have little experience on how to handle HIV-specific care under these circumstances. A framework is urgently needed that both defines and sets out strategies to handle the specific challenges for emergency support for people living with HIV, both those staying in Ukraine and those becoming displaced. The optimal allocation of the few available medical resources, primarily antiretroviral therapy, is necessary to best prevent individual morbidity and achieve population transmission control. Professional HIV networks play a central role to create, optimise, and execute support strategies. Through a rapid literature review we identified the key strategies needed to create a support framework, adapted to Ukraine’s HIV epidemiology. We produce a unified support framework aiming to reduce the inevitable impact on Ukraine’s HIV care cascade now, and when rebuilding it after the war.


Life-Saving Care for Patients with End-Stage Kidney Disease during the War in Ukraine 2022

10.5.2022 – Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology

Authors: Natalia Stepanova, Mykola Kolesnyk, Zain Mithani, Baneen Alkofair, Rebecca Shakour, Anna Petrova, Volodymyr Novakivskyy, Jeffrey Hymes, Szymon Brzosko, Jeff Giullian, Zelde Espinel, James Shultz

Ukraine’s medically vulnerable patients, persons living with disabling medical conditions that require specialized care and customized approaches to safeguarding them from harm, have been incommensurately affected by the war. Among these are more than 11,000 patients who receive kidney replacement therapy (KRT). More than 1,500 have received kidney transplants, 6,000 depend upon hemodialysis, 2,700 receive hemodiafiltration, and almost 1,000 receive peritoneal dialysis (PD).


Public health crises and Ukrainian refugees

10.5.2022 – Brain, Behavior and Immunity

Authors: Zhaohui Su, Dean McDonnell, Ali Cheshmehzangi, Junaid Ahmad, Sabina Šegalo, Claudimar Pereira da Veiga, Yu-Tao Xiang

Conflicts are inevitable, and so are refugees. Due to conflicts in Ukraine, the global refugee population has reached new highs. As people continue to flee Ukraine amid the ongoing pandemic in droves, their exposure to COVID-19 and infectious diseases that are common among the refugee population, such as tuberculosis, is on the rise as well. Also factoring in the fact that Ukraine has a large population living with communicable diseases like HIV and hepatitis C, along with other non-communicable conditions like diabetes and cancer, there is a pronounced need to protect these refugees and local residents from potential public health crises. In this paper, we investigate the challenges that health and government officials face in addressing refugees’ health needs and preferences. Furthermore, we discuss the imperative to provide timely and effective health services to refugees, such as psychoneuroimmunology-based interventions that could help address refugees’ multifactorial and multifaceted health needs and requirements. While conflicts are inevitable, public health crises are not. In light of the renewed imperative to safeguard shared humanity and solidify global solidarity, collaborative actions are needed to ensure fair, kind, and true public health environments are available to refugees of the current conflict and beyond.


Prevention of conflict-related sexual violence in Ukraine and globally

10.05.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Lindsay Stark, Kim Thuy Seelinger, Reine-Marcella Ibala, Yana Tovpeko, Denis Mukwege

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb 24, 2022 has already resulted in the forced displacement of over 5·8 million people outside of Ukrainian borders and an additional 7·1 million internally. Women and children, who account for more than 90% of the displaced, are at risk of sexual violence, rape, and trafficking during displacement.1 Local and international organisations have documented reports of sexual violence perpetrated by Russian military forces. This mounting crisis suggests, not for the first time, that conflict-related sexual violence requires urgent action.


Sexual violence as a weapon of war in Ukraine

10.05.2022 – BMJ

Author: Jelke Boesten


Meeting the health needs of displaced people fleeing Ukraine: Drawing on existing technical guidance and evidence

8.5.2022 – The Lancet Regional Health: Europe

Authors: Bernadette N.Kumar, Rosemary James, Sally Hargreaves, Kayvan Bozorgmehr, Davide Mosca, Seyed-Moeen Hosseinalipour, Khawla Nasser AlDeen, Chrysanthi Tatsi, Reem Mussa, Apostolos Veizis, Daniela Kállayová, Karl Blanchet, Rita Sá Machado, Miriam Orcutt, Santino Severoni

The invasion of Ukraine has unleashed a humanitarian crisis and the impact is devastating for millions displaced in Ukraine and for those fleeing the country. Receiving countries in Europe are reeling with shock and disbelief and trying at the same time to grapple with the reality of providing for a large, unplanned, unprecedented number of refugees mainly women and children on the move. Several calls for actions, comments and statements express outrage, the risks, and the impending consequences to life and health. There is a need to constantly assess the situation on the ground, identify priorities for health and provide guidance regarding how these needs could be addressed. Therefore, the Lancet Migration European Regional Hub conducted rapid interviews with key informants to identify these needs, and in collaboration with the World Health Organization Health and Migration Programme, summarized how these could be addressed. This viewpoint provides a summary of the situation in receiving countries and the technical guidance required that could be useful for providing assistance in the current refugee crisis.


Digital psychological first aid for Ukraine

5.5.2022 – The Lancet Psychiatry

Authors: Iryna Frankova, Eric Vermetten, Arieh Y Shalev, Marit Sijbrandij, Emily A Holmes, Robert Ursano, Ulrike Schmidt, Joseph Zohar

The ongoing war in Ukraine has already taken an enormous toll on the lives of many. Ukrainians and others affected by the war need to sustain their mental health in this context. Hobfoll and colleagues identified five essential elements of immediate and midterm psychosocial support following trauma exposure: ensuring safety; fostering calming; maintaining a sense of self and community efficacy; sustaining connectedness; and fostering hope. These elements are widely accepted as general guidelines for the development of primary and secondary prevention strategies and are core in recommendations during the “golden hours” of the early care needed.


Hepatitis: Ukrainian refugees should be offered vaccines and free treatment, says WHO

5.5.2022 – BMJ

Author: Elisabeth Mahase


The Russian invasion of Ukraine: a humanitarian tragedy and a tragedy for science

4.5.2022 – Embo Reports

Author: Shcherbata, H.

The Invasion of Ukraine prompts us to support our Ukranian colleagues but also to keep open communication with the Russian scientists who oppose the war.


Addressing Public Health Challenges during Humanitarian Crisis

1.5.2022 – SBV Journal of Basic, Clinical and Applied Health Science

Authors: Subhash C Parija, Prateek S Bobhate

A humanitarian crisis is defined as an event or a series of events that threaten the health, safety, or well-being of a community. These crises may be man-made or natural disasters or complex emergencies viz. conflicts, wars, epidemics, pandemics, and other natural disasters like earthquake and famines, requiring unique targeted interventions toward the affected sectors. Worldwide, about 80 million people’s lives are put at risk due to humanitarian crisis arising from human conflicts, viz. Sudan and Syria, or natural disasters. In the current ongoing conflict in Ukraine, thousands of lives have been lost including that of children and many more have been severely injured. It has been estimated that around 4 million people would flee away from Ukraine in order to find refuge and support from across the region. The most vulnerable population groups in such times are women and children, elderly persons, persons with disability, and ethnic minorities. The humanitarian crisis poses an immediate public health risk to the refugee population with regard to not only infectious diseases but also noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), maternal and child health issues, vaccinepreventable diseases, and also mental health disorders.


Ongoing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine

1.5.2022 – The Lancet Haematology


APRIL 2022

War in Ukraine and the inverse care law

30.4.2022 – The Lancet Regionl Health: Europe

Author: Richard Armitage

Much attention has been focused on the nearly 5 million refugees that have left Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion of the country on 24 February 2022, and calls have been made to secure essential resources – including finances, facilities and healthcare – to safeguard the physical and mental health of this vulnerable population in its receiving countries. However, while these calls for compassionate humanitarianism are entirely appropriate and immediately required, the provision of crucial assistance to the vulnerable populations that still remain in Ukraine – groups that are likely to harbour health needs that are generally greater than those that have fled the country – must be urgently delivered.


War and politics. The 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine and refugee crisis on the eastern EU border from the perspective of border studies

29.4.2022 – Border and Regional Studies

Authors: Opiola W. et al

Since February 24, 2022, we have been witnessing the next stage of what began in the 2014 Russo-Ukrainian War: a full-scale military invasion of Ukraine. For the first time in the history of the European Union, the intensive armed conflict is now approaching the border of the EU and Schengen Zone. The consequences of war: the refugee crisis, humanitarian aid, and economic problems have affected EU countries both immediately and directly. While keeping in mind the human tragedy and the tragedy of Ukraine, we would like to address a few important questions from the perspective of regional and border scholars. From this perspective, the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine is another stage of the new political order in Europe, preceded by the war in Ukraine that started in 2014, the 2015 migration crisis, 2021 Belarus-EU border crisis, which altogether – from the perspective of the border studies – could be described as re-bordering and securitization of borderlands.In this joint editorial, we address four main questions. Firstly, how we can interpret the Russian invasion in the wider, historical context, taking the frontier thesis as an explanatory category developed by Turner (1994). Secondly, the Ukrainian refugee crisis, in the context of the previous Belarusian-EU border crisis, is a multi-layered issue, where religion, gender, geopolitics, and rationales meet. Thirdly, apart from the military and political actions, war and refugee flux could be seen from the perspective of a grassroots movement of aid. Fourthly, the war in Ukraine brings uncertainty and questions about democracy and peace in Western Europe.


Ukraine’s private clinics step into the breach of a targeted health system

29.4.2022 – BMJ

Author: Nataliia Bushkovska


Responding to the humanitarian crisis of the war in Ukraine with lessons from COVID-19

29.4.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: David Archard, Alena Buyx, Jean-François Delfraissy

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the extent to which human, political, and economic interconnections shape the contemporary world. Despite Europe-wide efforts to coordinate the provision of vaccines, the ideal of a unified response to the pandemic by an international community has been hampered by the deployment of unilateral strategies by individual states, each seeking an acceptable balance of political stakes and available resources. The crisis of multilateralism that became apparent with the COVID-19 health crisis is a concern that takes on particular resonance after 4 weeks of war in Ukraine, which is only one of many conflicts in the world today.


Disaster Management During War and COVID-19: Humanitarian and Prehospital Interventions

28.4.2022 – Prehosp Disaster Med

Author: Corpuz, J.


The war in Ukraine: A voice from Poland

28.4.2022 – Anaesthesia Critical Care and Pain Medicine

Authors: Zielinska, M., Tkachenko, Y., Ducki, M


Emergency in Ukraine: external situation report number 9

28.4.2022 – WHO


Situation overview: movement of Ukranians back in Ukraine

28.4.2022 – UNHCR


Ukraine: Humanitarian Impact Situation report

27.4.2022 – OCHA


Ukraine Situation report

26.4.2022 – OCHA


Ukraine: a cardiac surgical perspective

25.4.2022 – Cardiol Young

Authors: Novick, W. et al


Responding to the humanitarian crisis of the war in Ukraine with lessons from COVID-19

25.4.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: David Archard, Alena Buyx and Jean-Francois Delfraissy


Effects of posttraumatic stress and combat losses on the combatants’ resilience –

25.4.2022 – Československá psychologie

Authors: Ihor Prykhodko, Oleksandr Kolesnichenko, Yanina Matsehora, Viktor Aleshchenko, Oleksander Kovalchuk, Taras Matsevko, Vasyl Krotiuk, Viktoria Kuzina


Women, children, and adolescents face extreme vulnerability in conflict—and so do the health workers striving to protect them

25.4.2022 – BMJ

Authors: Helen Clark, Kersti Kaljulaid


Public health issues and health rendezvous for migrants from conflict zones in Ukraine: A French practice guideline

25.4.2022 – Infectious Diseases Now

Authors: N Vignier, V Halley des Fontaines, A Billette de Villemeur, F Cazenave-Roblot, B Hoen, F Chauvin, D Lepelletier, C Chidiac, E Billaud

Given the number of people leaving the war zone in Ukraine and arriving in France, the French high council for public health (HCSP) has drawn up a number of recommendations. The experts have taken into account the vulnerability of migrant populations, which is exacerbated by (a) promiscuity that increases the risk of exposure to infectious agents; (b) the psychological consequences of conflict, family separation and exile; (c) prevalence in Ukraine of communicable diseases such as (possibly) multi-resistant) tuberculosis, HIV and HCV; (d) low vaccination coverage (risk of circulation of poliovirus) and (e) the risk of spreading infectious diseases (Covid-19, measles…).Consequently, experts recommend that priority be given to: i) Initial (immediate) reception, which will help to provide emergency care and to assess immediate needs (psychological disorders, risk of medication breakdown and risk of infection); (ii) Other priority measures (vaccination catch-up, including vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 and mandatory vaccination for children’s entry into school, screening for post-traumatic stress disorder and tuberculosis) must be implemented as soon as feasible. At this stage, it is imperative: To ensure coordination and access to information throughout the country, by providing medico-social support (opening of social rights and access to care); To digitize medical data for the purposes of traceability; To use professional interpreting and/or health facilitators, or else, if necessary, digital translation tools. (iii) Finally, experts stress the need for vigilance in terms of management, conservation of social rights and continuity of care after the initial period, and organization of a “health rendezvous” within four months of a migrant’s entering the country.


Systematic review of health and disease in Ukrainian children highlights poor child health and challenges for those treating refugees

24.4.2022 – Acta Paediatrica

Authors: Jonas F. Ludvigsson, Andrii Loboda


Transgender Ukrainians facing “exacerbated” challenges

23.4.2022 – The Lancet

Author: Ed Holt

Activists report that LGBT+ Ukrainians fleeing the war are forced to leave the country illegally and fear for their ability to access health care.


European Countries Step-up Humanitarian and Medical Assistance to Ukraine as the Conflict Continues

23.4.2022 – Journal of Primary Care & Community Health

Authors: N Jain, S Prasad, A Bordeniuc

On the 24th of February 2022, the Russian Federation began an unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, marking the biggest military attack in Europe since the second world war. Over 4 million people have fled their homeland within the first month of the war and have triggered a large refugee crisis with impacts far beyond the Ukrainian border. People in the neighboring countries have shown tremendous support by stepping forward to donate food, clothes, medications, money, and other essential supplies. The governments and other regional stakeholders have also been supportive in accommodating and easing regulations for the incoming refugees. Herein, we summarize the humanitarian measures and medical donations that have been made by European countries as they stepped up their efforts to provide refugees with all necessary basic services. We further highlight potential oncoming challenges in Ukraine and the host countries along with relevant solutions to these challenges. The current scenario highlights the need for multi-party and multi-level collaborations (both public and private) to tackle the emerging situation.


War amid a Pandemic: The Public Health Consequences of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

22.4.2022 – CSIS

Authors; Michaela Simoneau, Humzah Khan


Ukraine: one in three people with chronic conditions have problems accessing healthcare

22.4.2022 – BMJ

Author: Melina Zachariou


Sexual violence in Ukraine

22.4.2022 – BMJ

Author: On 24 February 2022, Russia launched a military invasion of Ukraine. Reports of sexual violence against women and girls began to emerge less than two months later. Multiple perpetrator rape, sexual assault at gunpoint, and rape in front of children have been reported to non-governmental and human rights organisations in Russian controlled areas. Research on the use of rape as a weapon of war in other armed conflicts around the world tells us that we should not be surprised.

On 24 February 2022, Russia launched a military invasion of Ukraine. Reports of sexual violence against women and girls began to emerge less than two months later. Multiple perpetrator rape, sexual assault at gunpoint, and rape in front of children have been reported to non-governmental and human rights organisations in Russian controlled areas. Research on the use of rape as a weapon of war in other armed conflicts around the world tells us that we should not be surprised.


Obtaining proof of vaccination status and assessing vaccination records of refugees from Ukraine. Supplement to: Guidance on vaccination and prevention of vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks for countries hosting refugees from Ukraine, April 2022 update

21.4.2022 – WHO


Guidance on vaccination and prevention of vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks for countries hosting refugees from Ukraine, April 2022 update

21.4.2022 – WHO

This document provides guidance on interventions to prevent vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks in the context of mass population movement resulting from the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. The priority actions include: 1. planning and provision of resources to fully vaccinate refugee children with routine vaccinations in the national immunization schedule of the host country; 2. prioritizing vaccination against poliomyelitis, measles, rubella and COVID-19; a. inactivated poliovirus vaccine (‎IPV)‎ for children under 6 years; b. measles- and rubella-containing vaccine (‎MRCV)‎ to children up to 15 years who do not have at least two documented doses of these antigens; c. COVID-19 vaccine for priority groups in line with WHO recommendations and national guidelines; 3. identifying and closing any immunity gaps in the host population and proactively addressing any identified weaknesses in national immunization service delivery and programme performance; 4. ensuring effective disease surveillance and reporting systems are in place; and 5. identifying, investigating and rapidly responding to signals of vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks.


War in Ukraine: an immense threat to the fight against tuberculosis

21.4.2022 – European Respiratory Journal

Authors: Victor Dahl, Giovanni Battista Migliori, Christoph Lange, Christian Wejse

As reported by the Global Tuberculosis Network in the European Respiratory Journal, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has distressingly resulted in a plateauing of the global decrease in tuberculosis (TB) incidence as well as entailed a surge in mortality for the first time in a decade. As the COVID-19 pandemic response is gradually being integrated into healthcare systems worldwide, the war in Ukraine poses a new threat to TB control in Europe. Over the years, an admirable progress in combating TB has been achieved globally and regionally, although optimal control of TB was not yet fully in sight in Ukraine or Russia. Incidence and mortality rates have been falling steadily in both Ukraine and the Russian Federation, and between 2010 and 2020, the number of TB deaths in Russia has fallen by as much as 10% per year. Nevertheless, the eastern areas of the World Health Organization European region, including Ukraine and Russia (and also bordering countries such as Belarus and Moldova), account for the largest burden of multidrug-resistant (MDR)-TB in the world and also have a relatively high burden of drug-susceptible TB. Russia and Ukraine have the second and fifth highest rates of confirmed individuals with extensively drug-resistant (XDR)-TB, respectively, along with high prevalences of latent TB infection. Even before the military conflict, the diagnosis and treatment of patients with M/XDR-TB in Ukraine was limited by availability of diagnostic tools and medicines. Together with HIV, social determinants, and other risk factors for TB, drug-resistant TB is among the major challenges in controlling TB in the European region, and there is a dire need to ramp up case-finding. The reported proportion of HIV/TB co-infection is 22% and 24% among patients with a known HIV status for Ukraine and Russia, respectively, which is also highly unsettling.


Ukraine War Refugees – Threats and New Challenges for Healthcare in Poland

20.4.2022 – The journal of hospital infection

Authors: Katarzyna Lewtak,Krzysztof Kanecki, Piotr Tyszko, Paweł Goryński, Magdalena Bogdan, Aneta Nitsch-Osuch

Between February 2022, when the war in Ukraine began, and April 1, 2022, the number of refugees to neighboring countries reached 4,137,842 people. The majority have fled to Poland. The main challenge for the health system in Poland in this situation is how to develop effective adaptation measures.


UKRAINE: HUMANITARIAN SITUATION IN KHARKIV, LUHANSK, AND DONETSK

19.4.2022 – ACAPS


Applying the national mental health policy in conflict-affected regions: towards better social inclusion (Ukrainian case)

19.4.2022 – Mental Health and Social Inclusion

Authors: Eleanor Quirke, Vitalii Klymchuk, Nataliia Gusak, Viktoriia Gorbunova, Oleksii Sukhovii

The ongoing armed conflict in Ukraine has had wide-ranging health, social and economic consequences for the civilian population. It has emphasised the need for comprehensive and sustainable reform of the Ukrainian mental health system. The Ukrainian Government has approved a vision for national mental health reform. This study aims to draw on the lessons of mental health reform in other conflict-affected settings to identify areas of priority for applying the national mental health policy in conflict-affected regions in the direction of better social inclusion of people with mental health conditions (Donetsk and Luhansk regions, directly affected by the conflict).


Neuroscience of trauma and the Russian invasion of Ukraine

18.4.2022 – Nature Human Behaviour

Authors: Ali Jawaid, Magdalena Gomolka, Anastasiia Timmer

Since 24 February 2022, Ukrainian residents have been facing ‘complex trauma’, which combines multiple exposures to trauma, often in a sequential fashion. These individuals are constantly exposed to several forms of trauma: fear of losing life and/or freedom, grief, separation from families, social isolation, social disruption and forced migration, to name a few. Even when these exposures occur in an isolated form, they have long-term sequelae for human psychological and physical health. These sequelae include an increased risk of post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and anxiety disorders, as well as physical ailments. However, when these traumas occur in combination, the effect is amplified and the signatures of trauma may even appear in the germline. Stark evidence comes from studies of survivors of the Holocaust and their descendants that suggest intergenerational transmission of traumas that resulted from war and genocide, implicating both psychosocial and biological routes of transmission. Despite fundamental differences between the war in Ukraine and the Holocaust, some principles of the intergenerational transmission of war trauma may still be pertinent.


Immunization in state of siege: the importance of thermostable vaccines for Ukraine and other war-torn countries and territories

18.4.2022 – Expert Review of Vaccines

Authors: Christos Tsagkaris, Lily Laubscher, Marios Papadakis, Valeriia Vladychuk, Lolita Matiashova


The value of alleviating suffering and dignifying death in war and humanitarian crises

16.4.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: William E Rosa, Liz Grant, Felicia Marie Knaul, Joan Marston, Hector Arreola-Ornelas, Olena Riga Roman Marabyan, Andriy Penkov, Libby Sallnow, M R Rajagopal

Despite a vast literature on humanitarian crisis response, palliative care, pain relief, and care for the dying and bereaved need increased and urgent attention, particularly in the context of armed conflict. The Lancet Commission on the Value of Death challenged the medicalisation of dying and death and reaffirmed the moral injustice of the global palliative care and pain relief divide. The devastating humanitarian crisis in Ukraine raises the vital importance of these issues.


War in Europe: health implications of environmental nuclear disaster amidst war

15.4.2022 – European Journal of Epidemiology

Author: Jessica E Laine

Recent incidents at nuclear facilities in Ukraine related to the attacks from Russian forces highlight the fragility of nuclear power plants and other nuclear facilities in war and the very real potential for another environmental nuclear disaster and associated health risks in Europe. Nuclear catastrophes from war can occur from radioactive materials released from war threatened nuclear power plants and other nuclear facilities in war zones, in addition to the direct threat from the deployment of nuclear weaponry and can result in immediate and long-term health impacts. Despite historical nuclear catastrophic events, including the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident and atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and that for more than a century epidemiologists have studied the consequences of radiation exposures, there are still major unanswered questions regarding radiation risks and human health. Epidemiologists will need to continue to quantify the health effects from exposure to environmental radiation, including background radiation, and are able to contribute to conversations about reliance on nuclear energy and alternative energy futures. As a society we are compelled to rethink our ties to nuclear energy, especially with the potential of increasing reliance on nuclear power amid oil and gas crisis and considering climate change, nuclear warfare, including nuclear weapon testing, and the fragility of humanity and health to even low doses of radiation from these and other natural and unnatural sources.


The voices of Ukrainian and Russian scientists

14.4.2022 – Cell

Authors: Stoika R. et al

The brutal attack on Ukraine by the Russian Federation has shocked the world. While the world works to end the violence and help refugees, as a scientific journal, our thoughts are also with those in the scientific community who are directly or indirectly impacted by the war. We have been inspired by and applaud the labs around the world that have opened their doors to displaced scientists and remain committed to supporting scientists, whoever and wherever they are. Because science requires collaboration and trust, we urge the scientific community to continue efforts like this and to remain united, especially in times as difficult as these. In this Voices piece, we feature short comments from scientists from Ukraine and scientists from Russia. This small sampling is far from exhaustive, but our sincere thanks go to those scientists who were willing to share their thoughts on this volatile and emotionally charged situation; the views expressed are those of the contributors alone. We join the world in hoping for a swift resolution to the conflict, for the good of humanity.


The Conflict in Ukraine: What Does It Mean for HIV and TB?

13.4.2022 – Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care

Author: Michael V Relf


Invasion of Ukraine — support mental health of children and adolescents

13.4.2022 – Nature

Author: Ali Jawaid

Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine is likely to affect the mental health of children and adolescents, who currently comprise almost half of those fleeing the country. They are facing trauma that compounds fear and grief from forced migration and parental separation — and more — on an appalling scale.


Humanitarian access disintegrating in Ukraine: MSF

11.4.2022 – CMAJ

Authors: Duong, D., Vogel, L


Caring for Ukrainian refugee children with acute and chronic diseases

11.4.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Maria Giżewska, Annemiek M J van Wegberg, François Maillot, Friedrich Trefz, Francjan J van Spronsen

Care for the increasing number of refugees from Ukraine is both a priority and a challenge for state authorities, social workers, and private initiatives. By March 29, 2022, more than 2·34 million refugees from Ukraine had crossed into Poland, most of them women and children. European countries must help prevent additional human catastrophes.


Preparing for the Mental Health Consequences of a Nuclear Event in Ukraine: The Time is Now

11.4.2022 – Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience

Authors: Joshua C Morganstein, Robert J Ursano, David M Benedek, Mie Kurosawa, Jun Shigemura

The February 2022 invasion of Ukraine created the greatest humanitarian disaster in decades. The Ukrainians are already exposed to the traumas of war, and many have also experienced separation from family, becoming a refugee and losing their homes, cherished possessions, communities, and social support. The risks posed by ongoing armed conflict and concerns about use of chemical weapons are exacerbated by escalating fears of devastation from intentional or accidental nuclear and radiological events. These fears have been stoked by the Russian President putting nuclear arms on high alert with elevated radiation levels already detected when the Russian military occupied Chornobyl (Chernobyl) nuclear power plant (NPP) and stirred up the radioactive ground cover. Though a nuclear war remains possible , more imminent and probable threats include a NPP failure from interrupted electricity or damage from munitions fire, or the loss of ability to safely manage a plant by NPP workers being killed or forced to work as prisoners under extreme stress with inadequate sleep and nutrition. Regardless of the extent to which radiological exposure ultimately occurs in the conflict in Ukraine, the potential for such events creates significant risk to global health security. Healthcare systems play a critical role in responding to radiological events and must be prepared to address the direct radiological exposure health needs and the mental health concerns, which are significant and complex (World Health Organization, 2020). While damage to the Ukrainian healthcare system may prevent implementation of optimal practices to address the mental health aspects of radiological events, the impact of such an event would be felt by myriad neighboring countries that would experience fallout from radiological material and receive refugees with potential exposure.


Vaccination of Ukrainian Refugees: Need for Urgent Action

11.4.2022 – Clinical Infectious Diseases

Authors: Piotr Rzymski, Halina Falfushynska, Andrzej Fal

The unprovoked aggression of Russian military forces on Ukraine in February 2022 has caused a high influx of refugees, including children, to neighboring countries, particularly Poland. This caused additional pressures on the healthcare system and the need to meet challenges for public health, such as those related to infectious diseases. Here, we discuss the potential epidemiological risks associated with the war-induced influx of refugees (COVID-19, measles, pertussis, tetanus, and poliomyelitis) and highlight the need for their swift management through educational campaigns, counteracting anti-science misinformation and pursuing vaccinations of refugees but also improving or maintaining good levels of immunization in populations of countries welcoming them. These are necessary actions to avoid overlapping of war and infectious diseases and associated public health challenges.


International collaboration for addressing mental health crisis among child and adolescent refugees during the Russia-Ukraine war

8.4.2022 – Asian Journal of Psychiatry

Author: Cai H et al.


Health-care provision for displaced populations arriving from Ukraine

8.4.2022 – The Lancet Infectious Diseases

Authors: Alena Kamenshchikova et al.

More than 4·2 million people, including 208 000 non-Ukrainians, have fled Ukraine to other European countries in recent weeks, with the majority being women, children, and older people. The current crucial objectives are to ensure that people can safely leave the conflict zone and access basic facilities such as housing, food, water, sanitation, and emergency care. However, going forward, it is important for the governments of receiving countries and transit countries to develop clear short-term and long-term strategies for the provision of health services. These strategies must include access to vaccination, maternal and child care services, screening programmes, and care for chronic conditions and mental health.


Sexual and reproductive health, rights and justice in the war against Ukraine 2022

8.4.2022 – Sexual and Reproductive Health Matters

Authors: Eszter Kismödi, Emma Pitchforth

While campaigning for sexual and reproductive health and rights remains a day-to-day concern, wars, such as the war started on February 24 against Ukraine, bring an immediate threat to people’s lives, safety, and human rights. Sexual and Reproductive Health Matters has covered the impacts of conflict and forced migration on sexual and reproductive health and rights in enough countries to know that attention must be drawn to these issues now in the context of the war against Ukraine and that international and national obligations need to be invoked to protect the most vulnerable.


5 health crises that endanger Ukrainian lives as the war continue

7.4.2022 – International Rescue Committee


Children growing up in conflict zones in Ukraine and beyond need urgent mental health support

6.4.2022 – The Lancet

It is with great sorrow that we write to express our solidarity with the people of Ukraine, particularly the children. In violation of international law and human rights, the ongoing military operations are threatening both the physical health and mental wellbeing of Ukrainian children. The exposure of children to crude military violence can have lifelong ramifications. Similar to the children growing up amid a humanitarian crisis in Aghanistan,the consequences of the conflict in Ukraine could be detrimental to the future wellbeing of Ukrainian children within family, professional, and social settings. If the conflict is prolonged and engulfs all of the country, a whole generation of Ukrainians could face mental health trauma, anxiety, and depression, with long-term implications for physical health and social wellbeing.


Older people: forgotten victims amid the Ukrainian humanitarian disaster

6.4.2022 – The Lancet Public Health

Authros: Benedetta Armocida, Silvia Ussai, Maksym Pavlovych, Martina Valente, Eduardo Missoni, Marco Pistis, Baldassare Lauria, Flavia Bustreo, Graziano Onder

With improvement in life expectancy and the rapid population ageing in recent decades, when a humanitarian crisis occurs, a larger group of older people than in previous decades might be disproportionately affected. Although older people have been recognised as a vulnerable group in humanitarian crises, they have not traditionally been considered a priority for humanitarian assistance. International guidelines take older people into account and specific recommendations exist on the inclusion of this population amid humanitarian crises; however, their concrete extent of real-world applicability remains limited.


Impact of war on the dynamics of COVID-19 in Ukraine

5.4.2022 – BMJ Global Health

Authors: Dmytro Chumachenko, Tetyana Chumachenko

On 24 February 2022, Russia unreasonably attacked Ukraine. The current estimated number of victims in Ukraine is 18 million. In addition to the destruction and humanitarian crisis caused by the war, Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine came at the peak of the wave of COVID-19 caused by the Omicron strain. The calculated predictive incidence of COVID-19 in Ukraine at the beginning of March, modelled by our group as part of the National Research Foundation of Ukraine project 2020.02/0404, was about 30 000 new cases daily. War significantly exacerbates the situation with COVID-19 in Ukraine, which is confirmed by our analysis of six key factors in the spread of infection.


Trauma and displacement in Ukraine: the challenge to medicine and politics

5.4.2022 – QJM: An International Journal of Medicine

Author: B D Kelly


The health needs of refugees from Ukraine

5.4.2022 – British Medical Journal (BMJ)

Authors: Adrianna Murphy, Daniela Fuhr, Bayard Roberts, Christopher I Jarvis, Anna Tarasenko, Martin McKee

Since Russia’s reinvasion of Ukraine on 24 February 2022, more than 4 million people have fled the country. Seeking safety from escalating violence, most refugees have gone to the neighbouring countries of Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Moldova. By far the largest number are in Poland, which as of 29 March 2022 had welcomed over 2 million refugees.This vulnerable population will have both immediate and long term healthcare needs.


Prioritising mental health and psychosocial services in relief and recovery efforts in Ukraine

4.4.2022 – The Lancet psychiatry

Authors: Wei Shi, Peter Navario, Brian J Hall

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has created a humanitarian crisis with more than 6·5 million internally displaced people and more than 3 million refugees in neighbouring countries. Mental disorders are prevalent in conflict settings. A 2019 survey of 2203 internally displaced people fleeing Russian occupied territories from a previous invasion documented high levels of depression (22%), anxiety (17%), and PTSD (32%). However, mental health and psychosocial support are inadequately prioritised within complex humanitarian relief efforts, or in subsequent efforts to rebuild following conflict. We must ensure that mental health and psychosocial support are central to relief and recovery efforts in Ukraine.


The UN must provide secure medical and humanitarian assistance in Ukraine –

2.4.2022 – The Lancet

Author: Southall, P.


The Ukraine crisis: Mental health resources for clinicians and researchers

2.4.2022 – Journal of Traumatic Stress

Authors: Mark Shevlin, Philip Hyland, Thanos Karatzias, Nino Makhashvili, Jana Javakhishvili, Bayard Roberts

The mental health consequences of the war in Ukraine will be enormous. Mental health professionals who are providing care for people in Ukraine, or those resettled elsewhere, may require access to standardized and validated assessment tools.


Catastrophic Health Consequences of the War in Ukraine

1.4.2022 – JAMA Network

Phil B. Fontanarosa, MD, MBA; Annette Flanagin, RN, MA; Robert M. Golub, MD


Poland’s buckling healthcare system nevertheless welcomes Ukraine refugees with open arms

1.4.2022 – British Medical Journal (BMJ)

Author: Sally Howard

Since Russian troops invaded Ukraine, an estimated two million refugees have crossed the border to Poland, a country with one of the lowest per capita healthcare spends in the EU.


Mental health responses in countries hosting refugees from Ukraine

1.4.2022 – BJPsych Open

Authors: Kenneth R Kaufman, Kamaldeep Bhui, Cornelius Katona


Wartime toxicology: the spectre of chemical and radiological warfare in Ukraine

1.4.2022 – Taylor & Francis Online

Authors: P. R. Chai, Y. Berlyand, E. Goralnick, C.E. Goldfine, M. J. VanRooyen, D. Hryhorczuk, T. B. Erickson

The unprovoked invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation has resulted in the largest humanitarian crisis in Europe since World War II. As fighting intensifies throughout Ukraine, there is an increasing concern that the Russian Federation may consider the direct use of chemical or radiological weapons against military personnel and civilians in Ukraine. Despite prohibition of chemical weapons from the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1997, recent evidence has demonstrated that state actors will continue to use these agents as weapons of war and terror, despite publicly denying their use. We review chemical weapons produced and used by the Russian Federation (or its allies) to identify plausible risks in the Russian war in Ukraine. We also provide rapid assessment and treatment guidelines to recognize and manage these acute exposures.


Editorial: The Public Health Implications for the Refugee Population, Particularly in Poland, Due to the War in Ukraine

1.4.2022 – Med Sci Monit

Authors: Kowski , Mariusz Gujski.

On February 24, 2022, the Russian Federation initiated a military invasion of Ukraine, resulting in a significant armed conflict in Europe. Large numbers of refugees and asylum-seekers have left Ukraine. As of March 29, more than 4 million refugees, including over 1.5 million children, have left Ukraine, while about 7 million individuals have become displaced within Ukraine. Most refugees have gone to bordering countries, with 76% coming to Poland. This large number of refugees in such a short time requires urgent public health measures to ensure their health and safety. Refugees to Poland must receive access to healthcare, social care, and education. Those who have chronic disease and malignancy must continue to receive treatment. Medical students’ continued education and training in their host countries should be prioritized to provide needed healthcare resources. Epidemiological disease surveillance and disease prevention are required at this time. The continuation of the current conflict in Ukraine also poses a potentially severe risk to the global environment and long-term food security. This editorial aims to highlight the public health implications for the refugee population, particularly in Poland, due to the current war in Ukraine.


Attacks on Health Care in the War in Ukraine: International Law and the Need for Accountability

1.4.2022 – JAMA Network

Authors: Lawrence O. Gostin, JD; Leonard S. Rubenstein, JD

As of March 31, 2022, the World Health Organization’s Surveillance System for Attacks on Health Care (SSA) reported at least 82 attacks on health care in Ukraine, resulting in 72 deaths and 43 injuries. Most attacks involved the use of heavy weapons against health care facilities, personnel, patients, and medical supplies.In Mariupol, a direct Russian airstrike on a hospital complex reportedly injured at least 17 health workers and patients; an expectant mother later died.Russian forces reportedly took 100 patients and health workers and 400 civilians as hostages inside an intensive care hospital. These are part of a larger global pattern of attacks on health care in conflict zones.In the period 2016-2020, more than 4000 incidents of violence against health care in conflict areas were reported.


MARCH 2022

Health impacts of the Russian invasion in Ukraine: need for global health action

31.3.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Olha Zaliska, Oleksandra Oleshchuk, Rebecca Forman, Elias Mossialos

More than 1 month since Russia began its illegal invasion of Ukraine the tragic human suffering and loss of life are clear. Each day brings more death, injuries, and stories of people fighting for their lives. The implications of the war extend beyond the military and civilian casualties. There are geopolitical, financial, infrastructural, and health impacts. And the effects of this war, particularly on health and health care within and outside Ukraine, will continue long after violent conflict ends.


An open letter on the war in Ukraine from UK paediatric emergency doctors

30.3.2022 – The Lancet Child and Adolescent Health

Authors: Magnus, D., Reavley, P., Denselow, J.


Cyber risks to Ukrainian and other health systems

30.3.2022 – The Lancet Digital Health

Author: Udani SamarasekeraAs of March 14, 2022, WHO estimates that 18 million people in Ukraine have been affected by Russia’s military invasion. 6·7 million people are internally displaced and 3 million have fled the country. Alongside this devastating armed conflict is a less visible Russian cyberwar against Ukraine’s digital infrastructure, including the health sector. Other countries could also be affected, with warnings issued for the UK and US health-care systems to strengthen their defences against cyber threats from Russia and its allies.


Ukraine: War, bullets, and bombs – millions of children and adolescents are in danger

30.3.2022 – Child Abuse & Neglect Volume 128, June 2022

Authors: João Antonio Ravache de Alencar Rodrigues, Nádia Nara Rolim Lima, Modesto Leite Rolim Neto, Ricardo Riyoiti Uchidad

As the Russia-Ukraine conflict continues to unfold, the ever-evolving situation can be particularly difficult for children and teenagers. Children living in these areas face serious threats from bombing, landmines and unexploded ordnance. Their lives are also threatened by the destruction of vital infrastructure – health centers, schools and water supplies – because of the fighting. War can have a devastating effect on children’s mental and physical health, with potentially lifelong consequences. Fears can generate fantasies of the end of the world, as well as the fear of losing a loved one or life itself, nightmares and regressions to previous evolutionary stages. This situation is creating dramatic scenes at train stations, where families are forced to say goodbye.


Children: innocent victims of war in Ukraine

30.3.2022 – The Lancet Children and Adolescent Health


Rapid Gender Analysis of Ukraine: Secondary Data Review

29.3.2022 – UN WOMEN, Care International

Since 24 February 2022, and the invasion of the sovereign territory of Ukraine, there have been devastating effects in the country, including massive civilian displacement and casualties. The Rapid Gender Analysis (RGA) seeks to draw attention to the gender dynamics in the war in Ukraine—both preexisting and emerging—and draws out recommendations for humanitarian leadership, actors and donors to ensure consideration of the gendered dimensions of risk, vulnerability and capabilities in response and preparedness to this crisis. This RGA is based on secondary data resources—both pre-crisis information as well as information that has been released after 24 February. Resources comprise English, Ukrainian and Russian language sources across humanitarian information resources and media as well as information obtained through anecdotal discussions with UN Women partners. The secondary data review was conducted between 14 and 22 March 2022. This RGA builds upon the RGA Ukraine Brief developed by CARE International during the first week of the crisis and will be followed by another publication that will include an analysis of both primary and secondary data.


Armed conflict and human displacement may lead to an increase in the burden of tuberculosis in Europe

29.3.2022 – International Journal of Infectious Diseases

Authors: Victor Naestholt Dahl, Simon Tiberi, Delia Goletti, Christian Wejse

Wars are associated with an increase in TB burden. With the ongoing war inUkraine, the risk of a massive deterioration of TB management is huge. Europe must find the resources to take care of the health needs of refugees. Scaling up screening of TB infection and disease and treatment is essential


The impact of “the war that drags on” in Ukraine for the health of children and adolescents: Old problems in a new conflict?

29.3.2022 – Child Abuse & Neglect

Authors: Jucier Gonçalves Júnior, Liromaria Maria de Amorim, Modesto Leite Rolim Neto, Ricardo Riyoiti Uchida, Anna Tereza Miranda Soares de Moura, Nadia Nara Rolim Limaf

The early months of 2022 have already included several distressing world events. From the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, to protests against vaccine mandates and COVID-19 restrictions, to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Escalating conflict in Ukraine poses an immediate and growing threat to the lives and well-being of the country’s 7.5 million children. Humanitarian needs are multiplying – and spreading by the hour. Children have been killed. Children have been wounded. They are being profoundly traumatized by the violence all around them. Hundreds of thousands of people are on the move, and family members are becoming separated from their loved ones.


Protecting life in a time of war

28.3.2022 – PubMed

Authors: Carol Lynn Curchoe, T Arthur Chang, Mark P Trolice, Evelyn E Telfer, Alexander M Quaas, William G Kearns, Judy E Stern, David F Albertini

Despite centuries of lessons from history, war endures. Across Earth, during nearly every year from the beginning of the twentieth century to present day, over 30 wars have been fought resulting in 187 million casualties, excluding the most recent conflict, which is the impetus for this essay (Timeline of 20th and 21st century wars). We are, sadly, a war-mongering people. The word “war” word infiltrates our vernacular, e.g., the war on poverty, on drugs, on cancer, on COVID, and, apropos, on terror. How did rational approaches to disagreement and conflict evade the world’s progress? Reproductive physicians and scientists are dedicated to safeguard lives and build families. Violence is antithetical to our mission as professionals, and moral integrity as humans. We are deeply concerned for, and stand in unity with, our Ukrainian colleagues—the embryologists, scientists, OBGYN and REI physicians, infertility patients, and all people under siege. Reproductive health services for Ukrainians (as with many other war-torn regions) have collapsed. Deeply disturbing reports have emerged that cite civilian hospitals (including maternity centers) being targeted. Liquid nitrogen supplies are scarce. Pregnant mothers and gestational carriers are at emergent risk of delivering in extremely harsh conditions, cold underground bunkers and refugee queues.


Extending a lifeline to people with HIV and opioid use disorder during the war in Ukraine

28.3.2022 – The Lancet Public Health

Authors: Frederick L Altice, Daniel J Bromberg, Sergii Dvoriak, Anna Meteliuk, Iryna Pykalo, Zahedul Islam, Lyu Azbel, Lynn M Madden


Meeting the health challenges of displaced populations from Ukraine

26.3.2022 – Lancet

Authors: Ioffe, Y. et al


Growing concern over Ukrainian refugee health

26.3.2022 – The Lancet

Author: Ed Holt

Increasingly traumatised refugees are fleeing to nearby countries raising concerns over health-care capacity. Ed Holt reports from Vyšné Nemecké, Slovakia.


Meeting the health challenges of displaced populations from Ukraine

26.3.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Yulia Ioffe, Ibrahim Abubakar, Rita Issa, Paul Spiegel, Bernadette N Kumare


Resilience and perseverance under siege: providing cancer care during the invasion of Ukraine

25.3.2022 – The Lancet Oncology

Authors: Darya Kizub, Nelya Melnitchouk, Andriy Beznosenko, Galyna Shabat, Solomiia Semeniv, Leticia Nogueira, Patricia J Watson, Kim Berg, Edward J Trapido, Zelde Espinel, James M Shultz


Mental health and welfare of prisoners of war and people living in detention in the Ukrainian conflict

25.3.2022 – The Lancet Psychiatry

Authors: Michael Liebrenz, Dinesh Bhugra, Anna Buadze, Roman Schleifer, Alexander Smith, Robert van Voren

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has engendered profound suffering, with early reports of millions of refugees and thousands of casualties. Extensive literature has highlighted the psychological pathologies in the aftermath of warfare, and, as in all emergencies where human rights are often the first victim, proactively safeguarding vulnerable groups is critical. In the present crisis, civil authorities have understandably focused on protecting the general populace. However, we must not neglect the mental health care and welfare of prisoners of war (POWs), people living in detention, and psychiatric patients.


Caring for people with diabetes and non-communicable diseases in Ukraine: a humanitarian emergency

25.3.2022 – The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology

Authors: Galyna Maystruk, Sigiriya Aebischer Perone, Valentyna Anufriyeva, Philippa Boulle, François Chappuis, Bruno Lab, David Beran

As war in Europe becomes a reality with the armed conflict in Ukraine, the global community has responded politically and economically, and is in the midst of preparing an large-scale humanitarian response. The first response needs to reach individuals who are directly affected by the conflict and those who are fleeing to neighbouring countries, and address health, food, water, and shelter needs. Nevertheless, with 90·5% of mortality and 81·7% of disability-adjusted life-years in Ukraine due to non-communicable diseases (NCDs), the response for the Ukrainian population must also include NCD care as a priority.


Ukraine war: The humanitarian crisis in Kharkiv

25.3.2022 – British Medical Journal (BMJ)

Authors: Dmytro Chumachenko, Tetyana Chumachenko

For more than a month now, Russian troops have been destroying the Russian-speaking city of Kharkiv in Ukraine, where we live, along with 1.5 million other inhabitants. In Kharkiv, the war has resulted in the deaths of hundreds of civilians, large-scale destruction of infrastructure, and also a humanitarian crisis, which is getting worse every day.


Ukraine’s children: use evidence to support child protection in emergencies

23.3.2022 – BMJ

Authors: Lucie Cluver, Ben Perks, Sabine Rakotomalala, Wadih Maalouf


The new humanitarian crisis in Ukraine: Coping with the public health impact of hybrid warfare, mass migration, and mental health trauma

23.3.2022 – Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness

Authors: Sonny S Patel, Timothy B Erickson

One of the largest mass movements of displaced people from their homelands in recent history must be recognized and assisted by the Free World. The unprovoked Russian attacks on Ukraine during February-March 2022 will leave long-lasting devastating effects on millions of innocent victims. Nations worldwide, especially NATO member countries, will need to intervene to ameliorate the situation. This letter describes major public health issues apart from the COVID-19 pandemic that are emerging concerns, such as shortages of healthcare professionals, chronic care treatments and health prevention services, disinformation communication campaigns affecting the healthcare infrastructure, and the generational impact of the conflict on people’s mental health. A global response and public health support need immediate action including humanitarian assistance, food security, clean water supplies, adequate shelter, and safe transportation out of the active military zones.


Tuberculosis services disrupted by war in Ukraine

22.3.2022 – The Lancet Infectious Diseases

Author: Ed Holt

The war in Ukraine is threatening continuity of care for patients with tuberculosis in the country. Ed Holt reports.


War in Ukraine and barriers to diabetes care

21.3.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Alessi, J., Yankiv, M.


Brain health: The hidden casualty of a humanitarian crisis

21.3.2022 – The Lancet Regional Health Europe

Authors: Charles R. Marshall, Alastair J. Noyce, Aidan Neligan, Ruth Dobson

The Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 presents substantial threats to the health of the Ukrainian population. Neighbouring countries also face challenges due to an influx of refugees from Ukraine and escalating geopolitical isolation. The collapse of healthcare infrastructure and medicine supply chains, along with mass migration pose immediate risks both in terms of the ability to care for the casualties of war and the capacity to provide appropriate ongoing care of those with other medical problems. The war has sparked Europe’s fastest mass migration for a generation, which is likely to have profound downstream consequences for public health. In such a humanitarian crisis, the increased burden of disease due to traumatic injury, infection and mental illness is typically well recognised but the potential impact on both short and long term neurological health may be neglected.


War in Ukraine and barriers to diabetes care

21.3.22 – The Lancet

Authors: Janine Alessi, Marina Yankiv

The conflict and violence that followed the military invasion of Ukraine in late February, 2022, has already left substantial scars on the population. The human cost of the combat becomes more evident each passing day. On March 15, 2022, the ongoing hostilities affected hundreds of thousands of inhabitants and substantially damaged crucial civilian infrastructure in eastern Ukraine, including homes, schools, hospitals, and water and gas pipelines. In some southeastern cities, such as Mariupol, people have been facing critical shortages of food, water, and life-saving medicines, which were aggravated by the blockade of humanitarian convoys trying to reach the region with supplies. According to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, a total of 691 civilian deaths were confirmed by March 14, 2022—a number that is probably underestimated. In the middle of this social and humanitarian crisis, patients who have chronic diseases perceive health resources deteriorating at an unprecedented rate, raising concerns about their sustainability. For people living with a disease as prevalent as diabetes, the scarce access to essential health resources is even more worrisome. According to the International Diabetes Federation Atlas, there were about 2 325 000 inhabitants with type 2 diabetes in Ukraine in 2021, representing a prevalence of 7·1%. For type 1 diabetes, around 6700 children and adolescents had the diagnosis in the past year.


Examining the pre-war health burden of Ukraine for prioritisation by European countries receiving Ukrainian refugees

18.3.2022 – Lancet Regional Health: Europe

Authors: Marchese, V. et al


Ukrainian researchers flee war trauma and terror

18.3.2022 – Science

Author: Richard Stone

Refugees find aid and jobs, but many remain to fight Russian invaders.


From Ukraine: displaced twice and on the road again

18.3.2022 – British Medical Journal (BMJ)

Author: Anonymous MSF staff worker

As dawn broke on 24 February 2022 in Kyiv, I woke to the sound of explosions and the wails of air raid sirens. Huddled in my little apartment in the city, I felt sick with anxiety. I knew instantly that, from then on, my life and the lives of so many others would never be the same. Something irreversible had just happened: the glimmer of hope which many of us had kept alive despite the rising fear of an imminent war had been violently smothered.


Ukraine crisis Public Health Situation Analysis – Refugee-hosting countries

17.3.2022 – WHO


The UN must provide secure medical and humanitarian assistance in Ukraine

17.3.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: David P Southall, Rhona MacDonald, Olena Kostiuk, Volodymyr Shcherbakov, Aniko Deierl

We are calling for more involvement by the UN in the current conflict in Ukraine. Continuation of the health and humanitarian crisis will result in many deaths and much suffering unless there is safe delivery and implementation of humanitarian and medical aid, including secure humanitarian corridors and safe medical evacuation. Substantial international protection forces, able to ensure safe humanitarian work in Ukraine, are essential and urgently needed.


Examining the pre-war health burden of Ukraine for prioritisation by European countries receiving Ukrainian refugees

17.3.2022 – The Lancet

The recent escalation of conflict after the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, has already displaced 2,800,000 Ukrainian refugees, and the number is expected to rise in days ahead. Ukrainians can move freely between European Union Member States (EU MS) for up to 90 days, while the Council of the European Union has approved for the first time the adoption of the Temporary Protection Directive, which will allow a one-year, renewable permit to reside and to access essential services (including health assistance) in all EU MS. This will possibly facilitate a fair distribution of refugees beyond Western Balkans, already struggling with migration flows in recent years. Once entitlement to health assistance is formalized in all EU MS, there are some major aspects of the Ukraine health profile that should be considered to forecast refugees’ health needs.


Protection of perinatal mental health during the war in Ukraine

17.3.2022 – The Lancet Regional Health Europe

Authors: Chiara Sacchi

The dreadful days of war in Ukraine are producing what has already been described as the fastest mass migration to Europe in at least three decades. According to UNHCR, during the first week of Russia’s invasion, 1 million people fled Ukraine for neighboring countries, and most of the migrants crossing Poland’s borders are women with children. Refugee women giving birth in desperate conditions are unbearable documented images, and UNFPA estimates that 80,000 women will give birth in the next three months in Ukraine with severely compromised maternal health conditions.


Predicting refugee flows from Ukraine with an approach to Big (Crisis) Data: a new opportunity for refugee and humanitarian studies

16.3.2022 – Econstor

Author: Juric Tado


Fate of people with HIV in jeopardy in Ukraine

16.3.2022 – The Lancet


Addressing the mental health needs of civilian combatants in Ukraine

16.3.2022 – The Lancet Psychiatry

Authors: Richard A Bryant, Paula P Schnurr, David Pedlar

War-affected civilians are at heightened risk of mental health problems, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression. Data from the WHO World Mental Health Surveys have highlighted that recovery from PTSD is particularly slow in the context of war, indicating that the mental health impacts of the current crisis could be long lasting. Additionally, although recent events represent a very stark escalation in fighting, Ukraine has been defending itself against Russia since 2014, and this ongoing conflict has already led to a range of mental health problems. The cumulative effects of war and displacement since 2014 are likely to predispose many Ukrainian people to adverse mental health outcomes from the current fighting.


Surge of HIV, tuberculosis and COVID feared amid war in Ukraine

15.3.2022 – Nature

Authors: Leslie Roberts


Ukraine war: GPs get updated guidance on treating refugees and returning citizens

14.3.2022 – BMJ

Author: Gareth Iacobucci


Impact of war and forced displacement on children’s mental health-multilevel, needs-oriented, and trauma-informed approaches

14.3.2022 – European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Authors: David Burgin, Dimitris Anagnostopoulos, Board of Policy Division of ESCAP, Benedetto Vitiello, Thorsten Sukale, Marc Schmid, Jorg M Fegert

The infliction of war and military aggression upon children must be considered a violation of their basic human rights and can have a persistent impact on their physical and mental health and well-being, with long-term consequences for their development. Given the recent events in Ukraine with millions on the flight, this scoping policy editorial aims to help guide mental health support for young victims of war through an overview of the direct and indirect burden of war on child mental health. We highlight multilevel, need-oriented, and trauma-informed approaches to regaining and sustaining outer and inner security after exposure to the trauma of war.


Ukraine’s humanitarian disaster: priorities for health

12.3.2022 – The Lancet

As the Russian invasion of Ukraine enters its third week, the results of President Vladimir Putin’s cruel and destructive onslaught are becoming clearer. At least 352 civilians have been killed and 1684 wounded so far, although Ukraine’s State Emergency Service puts the number of civilian deaths at more than 2000. Official sources report that 17 children have been killed and 30 injured. Roughly 2 million people have fled to neighbouring countries. Russian officials have reported that nearly 500 of their troops have been killed; Ukrainian armed forces puts the number at more than 11 000. The global community has spoken of solidarity with Ukraine, but the humanitarian emergency and widespread harms to health and wellbeing demand a concerted international plan.


Meeting the health challenges of displaced populations from Ukraine

11.3.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Ioffe Y., Abubakar I., Issa R., Spiegel P., Kumar B. N


Conflict in Ukraine undermines an already challenged health system

11.3.2022 – The Lancet

Authors: Sophie Roborgh, Adam P Coutts, Patrick Chellew, Valerii Novykov, Richard Sullivan


The Ukrainian refugee crisis and the pathology of racism

11.3.2022 – British Medical Journal (BMJ)

Authors: Simar S Bajaj, Fatima Cody Stanford

War has catastrophic impacts on human health, but the risks facing those fleeing violence are made all the more dangerous when compounded by racism.


Russia’s invasion of Ukraine threatens HIV response

11.3.2022 – The Lancet HIV

Author: Ed Holt

Ukraine has an estimated 260 000 people living with HIV and, until the conflict broke out, a wide range of treatment, support, and prevention services had been provided across the country through state bodies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). But since fighting began, access to treatment has become increasingly limited in some areas. Antiretroviral therapy (ART) supplies are dwindling, and other support services have been massively scaled back or abandoned completely in some places.


Conflict in Ukraine and its impact on cancer care

11.3.2022 – The Lancet Oncology

More than 2 million refugees have fled Ukraine since the Russian invasion began on Feb 24, 2022, and over 4 million people, 10% of the population, are expected to be forcibly displaced as they seek safety, creating a wide-ranging humanitarian crisis. Ukraine has a high cancer burden with more than 160 000 new diagnoses in 2020 alone. The country also has one of the highest childhood cancer mortality rates globally. Thus, disparities in cancer care in Ukraine were already high before Russia’s unprovoked aggression and will now undoubtedly worsen as a result of the conflict.


Ukraine: diabetes on the front line

9.3.2022 – The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology

The crisis in Ukraine is evolving rapidly, with 2 million people estimated to have fled the country as of March 8 and many more facing unimaginable danger and uncertainty. Despite some advances made in Ukraine’s attempts to transform and modernise its health system, Ukrainian citizens still face large inequalities in health-care services, inadequate access to medical supplies and equipment, and have the lowest life expectancy compared to all other European countries. In a country still struggling with the burden of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has further disrupted medical services, including diabetes care.


The disasters of war. On kidney patients in the Ukrainian-Russian war

7.3.2022 – Journal of Nephrology

Authors: Barbara P.G., Gaetano L.M.


Humanitarian crisis in Ukraine

5.3.2022 – New Scientist

Author: Clare Wilson

People in Ukraine face a loss of healthcare and clean water that could cause a rise in infectious disease, reports Clare Wilson, with some hospitals already out of oxygen


Ukraine and the lessons of Alexander Herzen

5.3.2022 – The Lancet

Author: Richard Horton

A pandemic. And now war. A war, the UK’s Ukraine Ambassador wrote last week “on the whole of the civilised world”. The burden of war falls mostly on women and children. 10 million children younger than 5 years died in conflicts between 1995 and 2015. Women and children will now be dying from preventable causes in Ukraine. The health and humanitarian crisis afflicting Ukraine has received far too little attention. Consider those forcibly displaced. Although hard to predict, as many as 5 million people, up to three-quarters of whom will be women and children, are likely to become refugees. European nations must allow visa-free entry for these displaced families. Delay will be lethal. But one does not have to be displaced to be at risk. Deaths and physical injuries from direct violence are high in close combat urban settings. Protracted conflicts also bring food insecurity. Outbreaks of infectious disease are common. Surveillance systems and vaccination programmes will be disrupted. In the midst of a continuing pandemic, with a population poorly vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2 (34% of Ukrainians have received two doses of vaccine and only 1·7% a third dose), the risk of local spikes of COVID-19 is likely. Destruction of safe water and sanitation facilities only adds to the danger. Continuity of care—maternity services, dialysis, chemotherapy and immunotherapy for cancers, insulin supplies, mental health care—will be derailed. The history of war teaches that sexual violence will be pervasive. Amid the talk of punitive sanctions against Russia, the basic needs of the Ukrainian people are being overlooked.


Humanitarian work in Ukraine disrupted

5.3.2022

Author: Sharmila Devi

The UN and other aid agencies have begun planning for a severe human-itarian and health crisis following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb 24, amid fears the conflict could spark an exodus of up to 5 million refugees. WHO Europe warned of “humanitarian catastrophe in Europe”, including significant casualties as well as further damage to already fragile health systems.


Scientists in the line of fire

4.3.2022 – Science

Authors: Marcia McNutt, John Hildebrand

The devastation and despair gripping Ukraine following the unprovoked invasion by neighboring Russia is heartbreaking and unthinkable. Such a loss of life and homeland has stirred wide concern around the world. This war sets back progress to establish a peaceful and sustainable world and to address important problems faced by all humanity, including climate change, environmental degradation, public health, and inequality. The international community of scientists cooperates extensively to address the challenges of our time, and a war that is destroying a stable and healthy nation and provoking a refugee crisis is no exception. What can the scientific community do most immediately to provide support and aid to its Ukrainian colleagues in their time of need? The community should focus on strengthening regional partnerships in Eastern Europe, networking to find refugees safe havens, speaking out forcefully against this invasion, and preparing to help rebuild Ukrainian science when the time is right.

FEBRUARY 2022

Relationship between Socio-Demographic Factors and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A Cross Sectional Study among Civilian Participants’ Hostilities in Ukraine

26.2.2022 – International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

Authors: Stanisław FelORCID, Krzysztof Jurek, Katarzyna Lenart-Kłoś


Ukraine invasion: Agencies warn of humanitarian catastrophe in Europe

25.2.2022 – BMJ

Author: Wise, J.

Centre Media coverage