USAID Empowers Young Leaders to Transform Ukraine’s Healthcare System

Speeches Shim

Tuesday, February 2, 2021
In 2019, Dmytro Nestor was selected by the USAID SAFEMed activity to participate in Jumpstart, a young professionals initiative.
Courtesy of USAID SAFEMed activity

When he enrolled in medical university, Dmytro Nestor was following in his father’s footsteps. His father worked on an ambulance crew in his home city of Lviv, Ukraine. As a student, Dmytro became disappointed with the inefficiency of Ukraine’s healthcare system and its pervasive corruption. That was when he committed himself to finding solutions.    

As the Government of Ukraine embraced a progressive health reform agenda, Dmytro became a public activist. While advocating for important reforms in collaboration with government authorities and non-governmental organizations,  he became aware of another problem in Ukraine’s healthcare system: the lack of effective leadership ready to champion and defend healthcare reforms. Hence, he decided to become one such leader. 

In 2019, Dmytro was selected by the USAID SAFEMed activity to participate in Jumpstart, a young professionals initiative. Building on USAID’s long tradition of investing in young leaders, this program places young professionals under the direct guidance of experts to equip them with the skills needed to become civil servants or development professionals in the medical field.

A year after joining the Jumpstart initiative, Dmytro has become a driver of change. He is now seconded as a consultant to the Center of Public Health where he analyzes access data for HIV medicines, creates dashboards, and prepares literature reviews for policy-level decision makers to ensure life-saving HIV medicines reach patients. His work is crucial amid the COVID-19 pandemic, as it enables rapid response to logistical challenges and bottlenecks. While working full time, Dmytro has also returned to school, pursuing his studies in public health. 

USAID’s SAFEMed program, led by Management Sciences for Health, has implemented the Jumpstart initiative for over a year. Thus far, nine young specialists have worked together with international experts in pharmaceutical and healthcare management. Many have now seen the transformative power of healthcare reform first-hand by working with those leading reforms at the Ministry of Health, the National Health Service, the Central Procurement Agency, and the Public Health Center.

Last updated: March 05, 2021

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