The below is attributable to Acting Spokesperson Shejal Pulivarti:
Today, Administrator Samantha Power met with First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska. The Administrator affirmed the United States’ unwavering support for a sovereign, democratic, and prosperous Ukraine, free and secure in its internationally-recognized borders. She emphasized the United States remains committed to Ukraine’s long-term recovery and development priorities, while also working to meet the urgent humanitarian needs of the Ukrainian people.
The Administrator and First Lady Zelenska discussed the immediate and escalating healthcare needs in Ukraine, a tragic result of the Kremlin’s brutal war. First Lady Zelenska and the Administrator concurred that Ukraine and its international partners must continue to balance responding to urgent priorities with planning for the country’s future recovery. Administrator Power celebrated the courage of the thousands of health workers across the country who continue to provide lifesaving care despite the very real risks they are facing, including the many paramedics rushing into danger to treat those wounded by the Russian military’s shelling, and those continuing to treat patients across the country despite Russia’s strikes damaging and destroying health facilities. Citing USAID’s ongoing humanitarian support, the recent contribution of $1.7 billion in budget assistance to the Ukrainian government to support services like healthcare through the end of 2022, and the launch of a new health activity to strengthen Ukraine’s capacity to respond to public health threats, the Administrator underscored that supporting Ukraine’s health system will remain a priority in the months and years ahead.
First Lady Zelenska expressed her concerns about the impact of the Kremlin’s war on the mental health of Ukrainians and her focus on ensuring that mental health support is widely available to those in need. The Administrator discussed USAID’s ongoing mental health initiatives, including supporting mental health services for veterans, those displaced by the war, young people, and others affected by the war. They also discussed USAID’s efforts to expand the coverage of Lifeline Ukraine, a 24/7 suicide prevention and mental health support hotline.
Administrator Power and First Lady Zelenska agreed to work together closely to address Ukraine’s urgent healthcare needs while continuing to plan for Ukraine’s long term recovery.
The United States will remain a steadfast partner to the Ukrainian people and USAID will continue to work with Ukrainian partners to help ensure lifesaving care is available to all those in need.