President of Ukraine

First Lady of Ukraine, jointly with First Lady of Germany, visited the Charité clinic where evacuated Ukrainian patients are being treated

3 February 2024 - 13:46

First Lady of Ukraine, jointly with First Lady of Germany, visited the Charité clinic where evacuated Ukrainian patients are being treated

As part of the visit to Germany, First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, along with First Lady of the Federal Republic of Germany Elke Büdenbender, visited the Charité clinic and met with Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach and CEO of the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin Heyo K. Kroemer.

"I highly appreciate the leadership role of Charité and your personal leadership, Professor Kroemer, in building cooperation between our countries in the field of healthcare. With the presence of Mrs. Elke Büdenbender and Minister Karl Lauterbach, I want to thank them, the clinic, and all involved officials and partners for their leadership in providing medical assistance to evacuated Ukrainian citizens with severe burn and mine-explosion injuries sustained due to the Russian military aggression," the wife of the President of Ukraine said.

She emphasized that Germany is a key partner of Ukraine in performing the medical evacuation of patients, having received over 30% of all medical evacuees (adults and children) from our country within the MEDEVAC program supported by the European Commission – the largest number among all participating states. As of January 31, 1,044 victims have been evacuated to Germany, including 735 military personnel. Over 125 children with cancer have been transported to Germany. Since April 11, 2022, Germany has been offering weekly proposals to accept new patients. Additionally, the German government has established a mechanism for the return of evacuated patients after treatment.

The experience of Ukrainian-German medical partnership is valuable, as seen in the SOLOMIYA network initiated at the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. This project provides psychosocial support to people in Ukraine, uniting 34 clinics in Germany and our country. The project aims to strengthen mental health, provide urgent assistance, trauma care, and supply necessary medications. The initiative is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany (BMZ).

Together with the First Lady of Germany, Olena Zelenska visited the pediatric oncology and hematology department, a structural unit of Charité.

The first Ukrainian child and her parents arrived here on March 2, 2022. Currently, the clinic has assisted in placing 350 children with cancer in 52 pediatric oncology centers across Germany under the St. Jude's SAFER Ukraine programme. At Charité itself, 23 young patients from Ukraine are currently undergoing treatment. These children either required particularly complex treatment or were in a condition where further transportation needed to be avoided. In Charité, they undergo transplantation, combined chemo-immunotherapy, and CAR-T cell therapy. Heyo K. Kroemer said during the meeting that soon, 35 students from Ukraine will be studying at the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin.

The first ladies spoke to the little Ukrainian patients of the clinic.

"Together with them, we hope they will return healthy and strengthened to a peaceful and safe Ukraine," Olena Zelenska said.

Additionally, during the visit to Germany, the First Lady of Ukraine met with President of the Bundestag Bärbel Bas.

"First and foremost, I want to thank you personally, the German Bundestag, and the entire German people for the substantial and steadfast support of Ukraine from the very beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion. We are grateful for your visit of solidarity to Ukraine on May 8, 2022, and your consistent support of the parliamentary dimension of the Crimea Platform. The fact that Ukraine is increasingly heard in the world is a significant and just victory in the informational space," the First Lady said.

Olena Zelenska also participated in an event at the residence of the Federal President of Germany, Bellevue Palace (Berlin), on the occasion of the Ukrainian-German Conference on Mental Health, Psychosocial Support and Rehabilitation, where she met with the President of the country, Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

"This year, Germany will host an important Ukraine Recovery Conference scheduled for June in Berlin. We hope for its successful outcome and a substantial contribution from the international community to the rebuilding of Ukraine, thus investing in our shared secure future," Olena Zelenska said during the meeting.



First Lady's visit to Germany

2 February 2024 - 19:38