How the ‘treatment funding’ work is done

In the last couple of days several people have asked me about how exactly our foundation works. What kind of documentation is needed, why is it needed, why can’t we just give cash to the families, etc…

I will try to answer the most frequently asked questions here.

If your question wasn’t answered — please leave us a comment.

How do we choose who to help?

We work with children that are getting treatment in the Pediatric Department at the Institute of Neurosurgery in Kiev (named after Academic Romodanov).
Firstly — abandoned children and children from the orphanages. We have to take them on `full support`. If we can’t handle them on our own — we work together with another foundation operating at the Department `Zaporuka`.
Secondly — children from large and low-income families. We are usually approached by the doctors, who let us know that there isn’t enough medication for the preparation for the surgery and the surgery itself. The amount of help depends on the situation. Someone needs help with the purchase of a shunting system, while in some cases — the mother doesn’t even have money for food.

How does the treatment funding work?

The list of documentation the parents need to provide us with (if the child has parents):
1. An application for help (written by the mother) + permission to use pictures and medical documents of the child.
Without the permission no foundation has a right to post any pictures or information about the child online, organize a fundraiser for his, etc, as it is a violation of the law on protection of personal data and medical secrecy.
2. Child’s birth certificate and copies of the parents’ passports.
3. A statement confirming that the child is indeed at the hospital + all other medical documentation confirming the diagnosis. This can be easily done at the Department in a day or two.
4. A statement on family composition and family income. This is the hardest document to provide, as it takes time to get it, which neither the mother, nor the child, usually have. It is required by law, however. In extreme cases we start working with the family before we get the statement, which is later sent to us by one of the child’s relatives.

We do not give cash to parents!

The foundation employee takes the prescription list and the list of everything required for the surgery from the attending doctor (or the mother) and purchases everything herself..

The medication is issued to the family on the day it needs to be administered; maximum two days in advance (for the weekend). We meet different kinds of people. Some are absolutely amazing. Not all of them, however. There have been cases when meds (expensive antibiotics) issued for a full week’s time at once have been sold by the parents (to the other parents for a cheaper price) and the child was left with no medication, again.

The foundation employee sees the child almost every day, talks to the mother and observes the treatment process.

For the abandoned children all the medication is brought and given to the Department. If there is a need for a round the clock care, if we cannot handle it with the help of volunteers, we hire a nanny.

If the child (or the mother) in our care need clothes, food, hygiene products (diapers, shampoo, soap, linens… ) — we wither buy it for them or collect donations from volunteers.

When possible we also try to provide help with transportations; to the train station, another hospital, to have tests done, consults… We are also friends with several other foundations, so in cases where our children are transferred to a different hospital or city we contact them and try to arrange for the support of a different foundation.

Why don’t you post mothers’ phone numbers online?

We try to protect them. Protect them from calls with questions or advice like “did you get my 100uah?”, “you should urgently see a homoeopathic doctor (osteopathiс doctor,healer, etc)”, “what about your husband, did he leave you?”. Protect from the midnight calls, that wake up a barely ever sleeping baby.
The mothers in our care have very sick children. They are psychologically exhausted and need a gentle approach. One such phone call can put them in much distress.
And that’s me talking about those who call with good intentions. There are also con artist and simply strange people.
If you want to call the mother we ask for her permission, letting her know of all the possible outcomes, and if she allows us, we send you her number in a private message.

How and where does the foundation buy medication?

We have two agreements signed with two different suppliers of medication and one pharmacy. We give them the full prescription list, get an invoice, pay and receive the medication.
It usually ends up being 5-10% cheaper than most prices around town.
Apart from that, there is one pharmacy that gives us medication for free once in a while.

How we work on the ‘target programs': repairs, purchase of equipment, etc…

This one is more or less clear.
We search for the cheapest (or preferably free) option. We keep all the receipts, the invoices, the estimates. When the work is done, with a ‘goods or services received certificate’ we pass it onto the Institute’s balance sheet.