After a wonderful visit with old and new friends in Poltava it was on to Cherkasy. On the Dnieper River at its widest point. With a 13 km long hydroelectric dam. Largest in Europe.
Their Hospital and Auditorium were beautiful. The audience was predominantly Emergency Medicine but also a couple Cardiologists and Medical students and PA students.
Included in this post some photos of this pretty area.
This was a first time visit to Poltava. Historic area of battles in the 18th Century. About a 4 hour drive from Kyiv. Similar in size to Vinnitsa a bit less than 400,000 people.
Our accommodations were nice and set in a forest. Few photos of the area attached. One of my translator Dr Ivan Kuzminsky and me at supper table
At the Medical University there were a couple hundred in attendance. It was a joy to make the presentations of Medical Myths in PreHospital Care, EKGs you must Know, STEMI Equivalent EKGs, and Update on Intraosseous Access.
Lots of questions and interactions. Wonderful hosts.
All went smoothly on flights from Nashville to Kyiv.
A joy to see Drs. Sergei Bolyukh, Vitaliy Krylyuk and Ivan Kuzminsky at Borispil Airport.
After a quick refreshing at the Hotel it was out to supper in beautiful Kyiv at a Georgian Restaurant.
After returning to the Hotel I slept until 3 am. Then awakened to watch game 6 in the Nashville Predators versus Anaheim Ducks series. Wow. Back home with Catherine and Mary Ellen and Emerson and Heather in attendance, the Predators won!!‼️‼️🏒🏒🏒🏒🇺🇦🇺🇦
In the morning up for a walk in appropriate regalia.
Then on to Poltava by van with our great driver Sasha.
This year, from about May 22-June 4 we will have an opportunity to share in Ukraine at two one day Seminars on Pre Hospital Care, and a 3 day national EMS Competition and Seminar coordinated by Dr. Vitaliy Krylyuk, with whom we have shared in similar efforts for the past 5 years….and who is the ACEP Liaison Physician for Ukraine.
This year we will be in Poltava, Cherkasy, and at a national EMS competition in Sumy. We will focus on EKG’s Pre Hospital, Trauma Resuscitation, Intraosseous Use.
In late October, Dr. Krylyuk will join me at the annual ACEP Scientific Assembly and International Section meeting in Washington, DC.
Brian R. McMurray, MD, FACEP, FACP
ACEP Ambassador to Ukraine
Our overnight train to Odessa on the night of the 27th was interesting in that it was the first time I had been on a new train. Actually quite nice…not so rustic as usual.
We arrived the morning of the 28th and checked into our Hotel….made pretty much a beeline for the Black Sea, which had many beautiful sailboats on it with spinnakers out. We toured the downtown area as well….both historic and pretty. And then shut it down pretty early as we had our Symposium the next morning.
This time Dan and I presented to the same audience….all Emergency Clinicians…doctors and physician assistants….so we focused again on the practical and the clinical…though Dan was able to give them an overview of EMS organization and Paramedic Training in the USA.
As they were an “all clinical” audience, I really loved the time spent in discussing Myths, EKGs and sharing a few Simulation Cases….which brought out many points.
Vitaliy now wants Dan and me to return next year latter part of May, first part of June to expand the prehospital care presentations and Simulation cases….in the context of a national and international EMS meeting northeast of Kyiv in “Sumyi”, north of Kharkiv. There will be at least 32 teams of EMS providers from around Ukraine and some from neighboring countries like Poland. Should be fun and more importantly helpful in our quest to both teach and collaborate.
As well, my dear friend Dr. Steve Raffanti, who founded and directs the HIV treatment center in Nashville, who joined me in 2008, has been requested to return to teach at the HIV Treatment Center in Vinnitsa….so we may have a lot going on, and he might also give a lecture or two on HIV Emergencies….a topic I lectured on in my Vanderbilt days, with Steve’s guidance.
So….as we wind up here in Odessa, we have had an amazing time in Ukraine….and the expansion of collaboration and of knowing more of this beautiful country are two goals well met.
Photos and wrap up to follow…..
Truly, for me, Vinnitsa is a second home. This, my 35th visit to Ukraine has included so much time and joy in Vinnitsa….working alongside physicians and dear friends Drs. Sergei Bolyukh and Irina Stefannenko and families and individuals we have been able to support in various humanitarian realms.
On this Saturday, we had a wonderful luncheon with families including Lyudmila Sinyavskaya and her husband Frank. Lyudmila had her mitral valve replaced at Centennial Hospital in Nashville in May of 1997 and spent the summer with us. Also present was Sveta Panchuk and her husband Maxim with their two kids and another on the way…Sveta spent the 10th grade at Centennial High School in Franklin, TN and like Lyudmila, joined us for a week in the Adirondacks at Camp Canaras in the summer. After the luncheon, Sveta and Maxim took me to see her parents and the new home Maxim and Sveta built outside Vinnitsa.
Also at the luncheon were Dr. Marina Sizova and her husband Sergei and son Alexander….they are involved in the Messianic Jewish movement in Vinnitsa and help many people.
Galya Schpok and son Pasha and daughter Oksena were with us for lunch…and Oksena is now a Dental Nurse, and son Pasha’s affliction with cerebral palsy has long ago stabilized with him walking with crutches and communicating better than ever.
Lastly, we were joined by Anna Matichuk, now a University student in interior design, and her grandmother Olga Matichuk….widow of Grigoriy, who I had the joy of helping medically for years and through whom I learned of the need for Ukraine to adopt a uniform use of ACE inhibitor drugs in systolic heart failure…a discovered omission in their pharmacological approach to heart failure which helped Grigoriy, and others over time as they adopted some protocols I shared with local and regional doctors.
On Sunday, it was a visit to the Vinnitsa Nazarene Church service followed by a luncheon with Head pastor Roman Lebedyev and Associate Pastor Oleg Kuz. Oleg and his wife Irina and kids and the family of Regional Nazarene leader Scott Rainey are moving to Lviv in July and will start a church in Lviv. I am excited for them. As with the Vinnitsa Nazarene Church, I am sure they will reach out to drug-addicted people and alcoholics among all others…offering and setting up Detox and Rehab Centers. It was at such a Center run by the Vinnitsa Nazarene Church that I first met Oleg 10 years ago, when he was a patient. Amazing man, transformed by faith in Christ and with a heart for his people beyond any norm.
That night I was taken to Nemia, to visit the Foster Home overlooking the Moldovan border, of Archana and Ruslan Tkachuk. Their ministry, currently with 12 kids, is “Raising Hope Ukraine”. You can Google it and learn much about a very precious ministry of true human rescue.
On Monday the 27th it was back to Vinnitsa for meetings at the Hemodialysis Center where colleagues from DCI in Nashville have previously helped and where they now are offering to send 15-20 refurbished precious dialysis machines.
As well, we visited the new and only Hospice in Vinnitsa, a project of Dr. Sergei, the Staregorod Hospital and the Vinnitsa Nazarene Church. Inspirational to see, and to support this effort.
Then, another overnight train from Vinnitsa to Odessa, where we met up with our full team for presentations on the 29th after touring Odessa on the 28th.