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Global Environmental & Occupational Health

UIC-Ukraine Public Health Partnership

GLC Celebrates 15 Years of Collaborative Programs with Ukraine

Daniel Hryhorczuk (Director of the Great Lakes Centers), Ambassador Herbst (U.S. Ambsassdor to Ukraine), Natalie Jaresko (Head of Western Enterprise Fund), and Susan Scrimshaw (Dean of UIC School of Public Health)

On September 1, 2004, Susan Scrimshaw, PhD, Dean of the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health (UIC SPH), and Daniel Hryhorczuk, MD, Professor and Director of the Great Lakes Centers at UIC SPH, hosted a reception at the Mariinsky Palace in Kyiv celebrating 15 years of collaborative programs between UIC and Ukrainian research and academic institutes.  Over 50 people attended, including Mr. Herbst, the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine and Mr. Christopher Crowley, the Head of the USAID Mission in Ukraine.  Additional UIC faculty in attendance included Irina Dardynsakia, MD, PhD, Research Associate Professor at SPH and Christine Hryhorczuk, DDS, MSPH, Clinical Assistant Professor in the UIC College of Dentistry.  Dr. Scrimshaw welcomed the guests and expressed UIC’s commitment to continuing our academic partnerships with Ukrainian public health institutes.  Dr. Hryhorczuk presented an overview of joint accomplishments over the past 15 years in training, research, and capacity building..  Academician Elena Lukyanova, Director of the Institute of Pediatrics, Obstetrics, and Gynecology expressed the value of the partnerships from the Ukrainian point of view.  Ambassador Herbst underscored the value of academic partnerships and the commitment of the U.S. government to continue these types of academic exchanges.

Over the past decade, UIC’s collaborative programs in Ukraine have been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health Fogarty International Center for “International Research and Training in Environmental and Occupational Health.”  UIC’s major collaborative research program has been the “Family and Children of Ukraine” study which is the Ukrainian component of the European Longitudinal Study of Pregnancy and Childhood.  UIC’s research program on the environmental health of children in Mariupol Ukraine was selected as the joint U.S-Ukrainian environmental health study under the Kuchma-Gore Commission.  UIC is also providing data management support to the U.S.-Ukraine bi-national study on “Thyroid Cancer in Children Following the Chornobyl Reactor Accident.”  UIC has co-sponsored over ten international conferences in Ukraine and has hosted 10 Ukrainian Visiting Scientists to UIC for training.

UIC’s major institutional partners in Ukraine include in Kyiv, the Institute of Pediatrics, Obstetrics, and Gynecology; the Institute of Occupational Medicine; the Institute of Hygiene and Medical Ecology; the Institute of Endocrinology and Metabolism; the Institute of Ecohygiene and Toxicology; and Kyiv State Medical University; in Donetsk, the Institute of Occupational Medicine; and in Chernivtsi, the Institute of Medico-Ecologic Problems.  UIC’s newest partners include the National University of Kyiv Mohyla Academy and the Kyiv Institute of Postgraduate Medicine, who are partnering to establish the first school of public health in Ukraine.

Academician Yuri Kundiev, Vice President of the Ukrainian Academy of Medical Sciences, stated that UIC’s support of Ukrainian scientific institutes occurred during the most critical period of transition, when many institutes could not have survived without international partnerships.  Academician Elena Lukyanova highlighted the collaborative Family and Children of Ukraine research program and how its results have been incorporated into national policy on maternal and childhood health in Ukraine.  As Ambassador Herbst indicated to our Ukrainian partners at the Mariynsky Palace, “these academic partnership programs have the full support of the U.S. government.”  

More: UIC Helps Ukraine Inaugurate New Program in Public Health Management