The Front for Change public initiative leader, Arseniy Yatseniuk, has said that the issue of the physical survival of Ukrainians is currently on the agenda, Interfax-Ukraine reported.

"The average life expectancy in Ukraine has fallen by ten years and continues falling! If we don't manage to revive the public health system, our people will have no future," Yatseniuk said in an interview with the Fakty (Facts) newspaper, the Front for Change's press service said on Monday.

The politician said that the Soviet system of health care had many shortcomings but it was efficient and the quality of its services was higher than that in other developed countries.

"We have to revive all this. But we should rather focus on returning to leading positions instead of copying Soviet patterns," Yatseniuk said.

He stressed that reforms conducted in recent years had led Ukraine's health system to bankruptcy. Over the years of so-called reforms, the budget of Ukraine's healthcare system has dropped by seven times, Yatseniuk said.

"Gifts and so-called grease payments from patients are somehow supporting the functioning of domestic medicine, [and] at least this motivates doctors to go to work," the politician said.

Apart from salaries to medical personnel, the healthcare system has other problems, Yatseniuk said adding that Ukraine also needs medical equipment, housing for hospital workers and an effective disease prevention system.

"According to him, to restore the healthcare system in Ukraine will require not only the Soviet experience, but also a contemporary approach to healthcare management. He said that Canada should be seen as an example.

"Apart from the fact that medical assistance is free and affordable to all citizens of the country, a comprehensive approach to the population's health is taken in Canada. An analysis of tendencies in all kinds of diseases is conducted at the level of each province, and solutions for preventing these diseases are proposed," Yatseniuk said.


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