Jul 12, 2022 - World

Ukraine receiving $1.7 billion in aid to pay health workers

Ukrainian health worker

A health worker at a hospital in Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on June 1. Photo: Leon Klein/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The U.S. will provide Ukraine with a new $1.7 billion aid package to help the country pay health workers and provide other essential services.

Why it matters: Ukraine's health care system has been battered by Russia's unprovoked invasion. As of late May, the WHO has verified more than 240 attacks on Ukrainian health facilities.

  • Thousands of Ukrainians have died due to lack of access to lifesaving health treatments for chronic ailments such as cancer and diabetes.

The big picture: The money is being provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

  • The direct budgetary aid is intended to mitigate the difficulties of the acute budget deficit that has been caused by Russian President Vladimir Putin's "brutal war of aggression," USAID said in a statement.

What they're saying: "$1.7 billion is not just yet another financial support; it is an investment that makes us a step closer to victory,” Ukraine's Health Minister Viktor Liashko said in a statement, AP reported.

  • Liashko added that paying health workers' salaries has been becoming increasingly difficult each month "due to the overwhelming burden of war," per AP.
  • "This aid will help Ukraine's democratic government provide essential services for the people of Ukraine," Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.
  • "The Treasury Department and USAID are working quickly and diligently to ensure President Biden’s bipartisan package of assistance for Ukraine reach those who need it most at the front lines of Putin’s brutal and illegal war," Yellen added.

Editor's note: This article was corrected to note that the money is being provided by USAID. A previous version said the World Bank contributed, but it is acting as an intermediary.

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