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Meeting on improving medical care for children

Mikhail Mishustin: Good afternoon, dear colleagues, dear friends! June 1 is a special day in our country, we celebrate the International Children’s Day. This is your holiday too. After all, doctors, nurses, other medical workers not only care about the health and life of children, their mothers, but also are their real protectors. I want to congratulate you with all my heart on this holiday.

Today we are meeting with specialists who work in different regions of our country, perform complex operations using the most advanced high-tech techniques, do their best for their little patients and their mothers.

Meeting participants

List of participants in the meeting on improving health care for children, 01 June 2021

The person who saved someone’s life is called a hero, but for you it is a daily job that requires not only excellent professional training, but also a big human heart and, of course, a lot of mental strength. Thank you for your work, I wish you did not stop there, I am sure you still have many successes ahead.

Today we will discuss with you what needs to be done to improve medical care, primarily for young patients. Now children are already receiving specialized care in 236 children’s hospitals. The construction of five of them was completed last year, despite the spread of coronavirus infection and restrictions, which, unfortunately, were also present in construction. We plan to commission seven more children’s hospitals this year.

Over 19 thousand units of new equipment were delivered to children’s polyclinics in two years. More than 1.5 thousand maternity hospitals and departments, as well as 94 perinatal centers operate throughout the country, 56 of which were built with federal funds, the rest are regional. Mothers and newborns are provided with high-tech assistance in the most difficult cases. Very low birth weight children are cared for. Today we spoke in detail with the doctors who are directly at the forefront of providing these services. Doctors are saving women whose lives and health are at risk during pregnancy and childbirth.

To a large extent, thanks to the specialists of perinatal centers, even in the year of the pandemic, we managed to significantly reduce infant mortality. Both here and abroad, this is one of the key criteria for assessing the effectiveness of medical care in the country as a whole. Now the figure is two times lower than 15 years ago. Last year alone, it was possible to save 12% more babies’ lives than a year earlier, and this is hundreds of little children.

It is important to further improve these indicators, to timely develop and introduce advanced medical technologies into wide practice. The Kulakov Center, which we have just examined, pays the most serious attention to this issue. Over two and a half thousand doctors improve their qualifications and master modern techniques here every year.

The center’s specialists advise colleagues throughout Russia. Thanks now to the capabilities of telemedicine, they are in constant contact with almost a hundred perinatal centers in all regions (today we were told about this in detail), share their knowledge and experience.

Together with you, we will continue to take measures to provide the best medicine for the young citizens of our country. Now we are in the fourth year of the Decade of Childhood, which is being held at the initiative of the President of Russia. The plan of its main activities approved by the Government includes a whole block of measures aimed at strengthening the health of children, and the main priority here is the timely detection of diseases and their treatment at an early stage. For this, of course, it is necessary to expand (we also talked about this in detail today) neonatal screening.

For 15 years, most babies have been screened for five hereditary diseases immediately after birth in the maternity hospital. For all the time, more than 20 million children have passed such tests. Diseases were diagnosed in about 15 thousand. And early diagnosis seriously helped to prescribe treatment for them in time, to stop the disease or its grave consequences.

The possibilities of medicine are constantly growing. New tests, new techniques, new technologies appear. And postpartum screening techniques must include many more diseases. I consider it necessary to expand it several times in our country. This will significantly reduce infant mortality and additionally save about a thousand children annually.


Mikhail Mishustin visited the National Medical Research Center of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Perinatology named after Academician V. I. Kulakov

We will examine the babies immediately after birth. It is clear that such an innovation will require significant financial investments. But we are talking about the health and future of children, and it seems to me that nothing is more important for us.

Dear Colleagues! I would like to hear your views and suggestions, including on expanding screening. What is the best way to organize this work so that it is as effective as possible?

Let’s get down to the discussion. I would like to ask Dmitry Yuryevich Trofimov, Director of the Institute of Reproductive Genetics at the Kulakov Center, to speak. You are welcome.

To be continued…

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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