Press Release

Treating diabetes: WHO delivers insulin to hospitals in Ukraine

02 September 2022

WHO has delivered more than 26 metric tonnes of insulin pens to hospitals throughout Ukraine in an effort to ensure that people with living diabetes can improve their quality of life.

It is estimated that over 9% of the population in Ukraine is living with diabetes mellitus, a condition that can cause costly and debilitating complications including heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure, blindness and lower-limb amputations if untreated.

“Access to insulin can save lives and prevent the development of disabling complications,” explained Dr Jarno Habicht, WHO Representative in Ukraine. “WHO is stepping up its efforts with the Ministry of Health to respond to mounting health needs throughout Ukraine. It is vital that access to insulin and other medicines is made available during these challenging times, as the coming months could test Ukraine’s health system as never before.”

More than 370 000 insulin pens are being disseminated to hospitals in the Dnipropetrovsk, Ivano-Frankivsk, Khmelnytskyi, Kirovohrad, Kyiv, Mykolaiv, Poltava, Rivne, Ternopil, Volyn, Zakarpattya and Zaporizhzhia regions. The donations were made possible with support from the pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk and the nongovernmental organization Direct Relief.

Supplying medical facilities and pharmacies with insulin requires a well functioning logistics system to comply with the necessary storage and transportation conditions, in particular the cold chain. WHO is making every effort to provide vital insulin as soon as possible and in full to all patients, including children, who need this therapy.

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death globally. More than 420 million people are currently living with diabetes, and this number is estimated to rise to 570 million by 2030 and to 700 million by 2045.


Diabetes Ukraine 2016 country profile (2016)


For more information, please contact: Rayyan Sabet-Parry, WHO Ukraine:


Iryna Tarnavska

Communications Officer

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