How the War in Ukraine Is Causing Indirect Deaths

The Russian attacks on Ukraine are having a devastating impact on civilians. But the health consequences extend far beyond the effects of bombing and shelling.

Although it may not be the most urgent threat Ukrainians face, COVID remains a serious risk. Crowded trains, bomb shelters and refugee processing facilities provide ideal conditions for COVID transmission. In the country, Russian attacks have destroyed health care facilities and cut off humanitarian aid routes, and those hospitals that are still operating are running out of resources such as oxygen and vital medical supplies.

“The war in Ukraine is having devastating consequences for the health of Ukraine’s people ... that will reverberate for years or decades to come,” said World Health Organization Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at the United Nations Security Council meeting on Ukraine on March 17.


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