New clinic for youth open in Kharkiv
KHARKIV, 12 March 2009 – Today new Youth Friendly Clinic (YFC) is opened in Kharkiv. It was established with support by UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Dzerzhynsky Rayon Children Hospital #14. The YFC aims to provide support to young people by advising on their problems and providing medical and consultative services for promoting behaviour change and healthy life style.
“The task of the Clinic is to convince adolescence that they can trust its medical staff and get help in solving their physiological problems or issues regarding their sexual health. Usually young people don’t address such important issues to their parents or doctors”, - said UNICEF Youth and Adolescence Development Officer Olena Sakovych.
The importance of special health services for young people that would address their needs is acknowledged and discussed worldwide for the last ten-fifteen years in many countries. The concept of the “adolescence medicine” is elaborated rapidly worldwide. Though the adolescents are probably less vulnerable to diseases than children or elderly people, they have various problems related to their development, sexual behaviour and risks to run upon. In Ukraine the overall objective of the Youth Friendly Clinics is to preserve reproductive health, to prevent HIV/AIDS and to encourage responsible health behaviour among young people.
In spite of the fact that the Youth Friendly Clinic is a department of medical institution, it is essentially different from the hospital. First of all, the YFC provides not only medical but psychological and social services to adolescents and carries out preventive activities. Moreover, the Youth Friendly Clinic uses the principles of friendly approach in its work – openness, accessibility, confidentiality and non-judgemental attitude to its clients.
“In Ukraine the development of Youth Friendly Clinics network is running for seven years, - mentioned Olena Sakovych. – To date there are over 50 such clinics in the country. It’s important to highlight that this medical institutions are the link between children and adult hospitals. Adolescent is not left alone with his or her problems”.
New Youth Friendly Clinic will be the clinical basis for the department of adolescence medicine of Kharkiv Medical Academy and will be the third YFC in this city: since 2007 the department of medical-social support to adolescence and young people is operating in the City Children Hospital N 2 and the Cabinet of the medical and social support based in Oblast Children Hospital is opened since 2008 in Kharkiv.
Veronika Vashchenko, Communication Officer, UNICEF Ukraine, +38-044-254-2450, firstname.lastname@example.org