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Immediate and growing needs for help to a fragile new democracy: health in the Russian Federation with emphasis on children and women. Report of a UNICEF / WHO collaborative mission with the participation of UNFPA, UNDP, and WFP, 17 February - 2 March 1992.
[Unpublished] 1992 Mar 17. , 45,  p.From February 17 to March 2, 1992, the World Health Organization and UNICEF conducted a fact-finding mission to the Russian Federation to assess the health of the population, particularly of women and children. These international agencies found a unique situation in which economic adjustment to a market economy has created shortages in this developed nation similar to those encountered in developing countries. After an introductory section, the second section of this report provides background information on the Russian Federation, its economic situation, social protection mechanisms, and social statistics. Section 3 provides an assessment of the state of the health services, immunization programs, pharmaceuticals and equipment, nutrition, and the food situation. The next section discusses the organization of the public school system which may be used to provide nutritional supplements and health education. The rapid decline in environmental quality is then discussed, and examples are provided of some of the effects of this deterioration. The sixth section briefly mentions the three types of nongovernmental organizations available for partnerships and strategic alliances with international donors. Section 7 summarizes the recommendations of the mission. Six areas of assistance (each with several related recommendations) were identified: 1) to support those activities which will allow economic transition to be sensitive to the needs of vulnerable groups and social issues; 2) to provide emergency supplies to the health system through international channels and to foster the rapid rehabilitation of selected national production and distribution systems; 3) to provide technical assistance for the restructuring of the health system; 4) to establish monitoring systems to identify and protect vulnerable groups; 5) to engender support for donor coordination and the facilitation of international assistance; and 6) to support nongovernmental organizations and private partnerships as they attempt to strengthen social safety nets. A basic budget (which totals US $164 million and is separated into urgent and priority needs) is provided. Annexed information includes the construction and utilization of a food basket to monitor food prices, data on breastfeeding, and the highest priority needs for vaccines, drugs, and supplies.