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Ukrainian-American Birth Defects Program

Visit by the Prime-Minister of Ukraine Mr. A. Kinakh

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Dr. T. Vihovska,
UABDP Surveillance Director

On February 26, 2002, the Prime-Minister of Ukraine, Mr. A. Kinakh, visited the Volyn Regional Children Territorial Medical Center. Mr. Kinakh acquainted himself with the Ukrainian-American Birth Defects Program (UABDP) activities.
Dr. W Wertelecki (center) and Mr. A. Kinakh (right)
From Left to Right: Governor of Volyn Mr. M Klimchuk, Dr. W Wertelecki , and Premier Mr. A. Kinakh

Data collected for 2000-2001 by the Program concerning neural tube defects (NTD) were presented. Mr. Kinakh showed great interest in the information about the possibility of NTD prevention by fortification of flour with folic acid. Particular attention was drawn to the pilot project of folic acid fortification by flour in the Volyn Oblast mills. Mr. Kinakh exchanged views with group of visiting international experts: the group consisted of Drs. G. Oakley (Professor of the Department of Epidemiology, the Rollins School of Public Health of Emory University, USA), P. Ranum (UNICEF and WHO consultant in the fortification/enrichment of cereal grain products, USA), and UABDP Director W. Wertelecki (Professor and Chairman of Medical Genetics, University of South Alabama, USA). Taking into account the importance of the Project, the Prime Minister promised the Ukrainian government support for folic acid fortification.

Dr. T. Vihovska (right) telling Mr. A. Kinakh about the Program Activities
Mr. A. Kinakh learns about the UABDP Activities from Dr. T. Vihovska.  (Behind is the governor of Volyn, Mr.  M. Klimchuk)

The General Director Dr. H. Vashchylin of the Medical Center, showed the distinguished guest the construction site of the Volyn Perinatal Center and told about its perspectives. The Prime-Minister promised his full support to the construction of such an important facility, and the Oblast Governor assured that the Perinatal Center will be functioning by the end of 2004.

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15/April/2002 dc