CMCF Fellows Attends 3rd Congress of Joint European Neonatal Societies

Children’s Medical Care Foundation was proud to underwrite the attendance and active participation of Professor Halyna Pavylyshyn and Dr. Iryna Sarapuk of I. Horbachevsky Ternopil National Medical University at the 3rd Congress of Joint European Neonatal Societies held in Maastricht (Netherlands) on September 17-21, 2019.

Neonatal specialists from across Europe came together to share research findings and advances in diagnostic methods and treatment techniques for diseases of newborns. Infant-family-centered developmental care, neonatal neuroprotection, patient-centered care, neonatologist-performed echocardiography, stabilization of the preterm infant, non-invasive support and ventilation, neonatal gastroenterology and nutrition and clinical guidelines were just some of the areas investigated and discussed.

Professor Pavylyshyn and Dr. Sarapuk presented findings of their recent research focused on the importance of skin to skin contact in newborns infants which attempts to answer the question of what the optimal level is for premature infants.

Among the congress’s other distinguished presenters was Poznan University of Medical Sciences neonatologist-and multiple CMCF Fellowship awardee-Professor Tomasz Szczapa, who served on the congress’s Scientific Committee and was the one to introduce a session entitled aEEG in the NICU – Clinical Applications With Interactive Case Studies.

In addition to expanding knowledge and improving care giving skills, participation in congresses offers attendees the invaluable opportunity to get to know leading practitioners in the field of neonatology personally and to begin to form the kinds of lasting professional relationships that will bolster their continuing growth as physicians.

Once In A Lifetime Experience With Professor Lauterbach

My observership took place from March 3, 2019 to April 3, 2019 at the Department of Clinical Neonatology at the University Hospital in Krakow, Poland.

First, I would like to thank the Children’s Medical Care Foundation for giving me this opportunity to receive a monthlong training internship at one of its European partner clinics, the University Clinic in Krakow, Poland. Thanks to this fellowship opportunity, my dream of comparing my work with that of my colleagues in Europe came true; to see the differences and similarities in helping newborns and the ability to apply gained skills and knowledge in my practice.

This month of training was extremely useful-both for my professional growth and as an incentive keep on developing. Also, one of the positive moments in the internship was that the training was holding with the head of the department the nurse of our department; that’s why all positive practical knowledge are easier to implement while several people from the staff implementing them. Immediately upon returning home, a meeting of all our hospital staff was held and many of the innovations I had observed were integrated into our practice at the hospital.

A speech by the head of our department is planned for the regional neonatology conference so that more of our colleagues will be able to take advantage of the knowledge gained at this training in helping newborns in their hospitals.   I also want to acknowledge the willingness of all hospital staff-beyond just the physicians-to share their skills and knowledge. What I saw with my own eyes that was very valuable is that despite the considerable physical, technical and financial ways in which our two hospitals differ, conscientious and well-organized work results in high quality care, and much from what was observed and learned during the internship can be used in our work. In the brief period since returning to work in my medical department, we have already changed our approach to the prevention of nosocomial infections, anti-epidemic measures and neonatal examination on fetal infections. Tactics and duration of antibiotic therapy has also been changed.

The evaluation of pain of newborns on the N-PASS scale in the department with adequate anesthesia was introduced. Now each newborn is examined together with the head of the department present with the subsequent administration of treatment and examination. The understanding of the diagnosis and prevention of necrotizing enterocolitis has improved considerably as well.

Methods of administering enteral and parenteral nutrition at our hospital, and the treatment of anemia have also improved. Sadly, there were also numerous life-saving innovations and methodologies that I was exposed to and learned about during the observership that we are likely to have to wait a while to implement in our medical department. These include the treatment of pulmonary hypertension with nitric oxide, ultrasound examination of the lungs, setting of a temporary Rikam pump with increasing hydrocephalus, invasive measurement of blood pressure, the use of high-frequency mechanical ventilation and electronic management of all medical reports.

I would really like to wish the Foundation continued success in providing professional growth opportunities to Ukrainian doctors.

Written by Dr. Mykola Shevchuk. Dr. Shevchuk is a neonatologist at Vinnytsia Regional Clinical Hospital named after M.I. Pirogov RPC DICN.


Words of Appreciation Expressed for Endoscopic Surgery Training Opportunity

May 31st, 2019

Dear Mr.Bjoern Martinoff,

We are group of pediatric surgeons from Odessa Regional Children′s Clinical Hospital, who took part in “Hand-on skills lab in endoscopic surgery for pediatric surgery” in Nowy Tomysl. For us this became possible thanks to supporting of your foundation. We just wanted to let you know how much we’ve appreciated this opportunity and how important this experience is for our practice.

We are truly motivated in acquiring new skills and knowledge to provide a high level of treatment for our patients, despite social and economic challenges in our country. That is why we are thankful for the organization of this high-level course for Ukrainian pediatric surgeons and making participation in it available for us. We hope, this will make a difference in surgical practice in our clinic, make many interventions safer and less traumatic for our little patients.
Moreover, it was a great opportunity to get a real team-work experience in laparoscopy which we will be able to apply in real circumstances. We can truly say, that participation in such a high-quality event would not be possible for us without your support.

Furthermore, teaching under the supervision of such great professionals as prof. Patkowski and prof. Czauderna, was a real pleasure and very motivated experience for us. We are looking forward to the next educational opportunities.

Once again, thank you for your support.

Best regards,

Kvashnina Anastasiia,

Dilanian Iona

Pavlenko Sergey

Ventilatory Support in Neonates Training Launched in Kharkiv

Do you know the real reason so many Ukrainian women go abroad to give birth?

There are large numbers of private maternity houses and state perinatal centers throughout Poland, the United States, England, Germany and other countries that welcome expectant mothers from beyond their own national borders, and many of these mothers come from Ukraine.

But why do Ukrainian women continue to choose hospitals so far from home? Is it for the comfort? Is it that some are wealthy and are doing it for status?

I’ve been giving a great deal of thought to this question lately, and I think I know how to explain it. Though some of the factors I mentioned may play minor roles in the decision, the biggest reason a woman makes this choice, I’m convinced, has to do with the safety of the tiny, delicate, extremely important being she is about to bring into the world.

…But new, private maternity houses nearer to her home are being constructed all the time, you might say..and existing ones are constantly being upgraded with better, more modern equipment..

While true, all of this matters little when a woman applies to these places the question of how confident she feels about each one’s capacity to effectively manage the kinds of unexpected medical complexities that can arise during childbirth. For too many of these nearby centers her answer to this all-important question is–not very confident.

So how does an expectant Ukrainian mother make this very difficult decision?

She researches hospitals to the best of her ability from those she sees advertised, and chooses the one that inspires in her the highest degree of confidence.

But what is most important in actually ensuring the safe delivery of a newborn? Is it a beautiful building? Pleasantly painted walls? New beds? Shiny, modern equipment?

The truth is that the single most important factor in ensuring safe delivery and optimum health-of both mother and newborn child-is the skill level of those entrusted with their care. If the treatment team is not well-trained and practiced in the most current protocols for what should be done, both in the moments leading up to-as well as the crucial first minutes after-a newborn baby enters the world, no amount of modern medical equipment, or fancy facilities, can prevent the kinds of otherwise avoidable tragedies that can, and often do, occur during childbirth at the hands of less skilled caregivers.

In the back of every expectant Ukrainian mother’s mind is this fear; the fear of what could happen if those responsible for her care and that of her newborn are not so skilled. This, I believe, is why so many expectant mothers elect to give birth at large state-of-the-art perinatal centers far from home or venture abroad to give birth.

But imagine if every maternity hospital in Ukraine possessed teams of highly skilled obstetricians, neonatologists, anesthetists and nurses who worked together efficiently and applied the principles of evidence-based medicine. If this were the reality, there would be no need for Ukrainian women to give birth far from home.

So How Do We Achieve This?

Training is the key. As caregivers, we can each increase our level of skill by learning from those more expert than ourselves. And by sharing generously what we’ve learned, we can increase the level of expertise of our medical colleagues. This is how we build out a seamless network of first-rate maternity hospitals throughout Ukraine!

But how do we get there? The good news is that there are many smart, compassionate people who want children to be born healthy in their own hometowns who are working on just this question.

So, where do we begin? At the beginning-by identifying and defining the challenge. With the support of the Children’s Medical Care Foundation, Professor Maria Katarzyna Borszewska-Kornacka, President of the Polish Neonatal Society, conducted an analysis of the state of neonatal care delivery in the most prestigious perinatal centers in Ukraine. Deficiencies in care delivery were identified, and a detailed report with recommendations for how to address them was produced.

A Plan is Hatched

Knowing that not all of the recommended changes could be implemented immediately, an achievable first phase plan was developed.

Ukraine’s three best perinatal centers, in the cities of Kharkiv, Kiev and Zhytomyr, were selected as designated sites for a series of best practice trainings.

  • Training topics were discussed and tailored to the needs of the individual centers.
  • Former Children’s Medical Care Foundation Fellows were recruited to be trainers from some of the best neonatal clinics in the world.
  • Donated state-of-the-art medical equipment was secured for use in the trainings.

This pilot program is designed to be the ideal platform for practical, real time learning for a wide range of medical professionals and staff who play a role in the care of a newborn baby.

The first of these trainings, “Ventilation Support for Neonates”, took place on April 13, 2019 at Kharkiv Regional Perinatal Center. A number of Polish experts in the field of neonatology, Children’s Medical Care Foundation and the Ukrainian Ministry of Health partnered to produce this 2-day training, which was a resounding success.

Subsequent trainings in this series are expected to include simulations of a variety of clinical situations and access to real patients.

By involving the young and willing we can achieve the goal of a future where Ukrainian mothers feel confident giving birth close to home knowing that their newborns will be safe and healthy! Stay tuned for more information on the upcoming trainings.

Written by Dr. Zoryana Ivanyuk

CMCF Sponsors Participation of Ukrainian Delegation at Neonatus 2018


The Children’s Medical Care Foundation underwrote the participation of 8 neonatologists from across Ukraine at the 6th International Conference on Neonatal Care, NEONATUS 2018, held in Poznan, Poland, on October 10th & 11th of 2018. This training was taught by Professors Janusz Gadzinowski (in photo) and Janusz Mazela-both former recipients of CMCF Fellowship grants, themselves-who also chaired the conference’s Scientific Committee.

Members of the Ukrainian Delegation included:

  1. Tetyana Nalizhyta, Head of the department of Intensive Care of Newborns at Vinnitsa Regional Clinical Hospital n.a. N.I. Pirogov, Regional Perinatal Center.
  2. Olga Bykovska, Assistant professor at National Pyrogov Memorial Medical University, Vinnitsa Regional Clinical Hospital n.a. N.I. Pirogov, Regional Perinatal Center, NICU
  3. Maryna Goshuk, NICU, Kyiv Perinatal Center
  4. Yulia Klymchuk, NICU, Perinatal Center of the Poltava Regional Clinical Hospital N.V. Sklifosovsky
  5. Tetiana Holota, NICU, Kyiv Perinatal Center
  6. Oksana Malanchak, Neonatal Department, Lviv City Clinical Hospital N3
  7. Olha Vityk, Neonatal Department, Lviv City Clinical Hospital N3
  8. Oksana Ostalska, NICU, Lviv City Children’s Clinical Hospital

Ukrainian Pediatricians Participate in Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Surgery Training

The Children’s Medical Care Foundation sponsored the participation of 10 Ukrainian pediatric surgeons at a 2-day special course on minimally invasive surgical techniques that took place at the Aesculap Academy in the city of Nowy Tomysl, Poland, on June 6th & 7th, 2018. The training opportunity was conceptualized and taught by Professors-and former CMCF Fellowship awardees-Dariusz Patkowski and Piotr Czauderna. Patkowski, head of the Pediatric Surgery and Urology Department at Wroclaw University of Medicine, and Czauderna, Head of the Department of Surgery and Urology for Children and Adolescents at the Medical University of Gdansk, have shared generously what they have learned in their lengthy and distinguished medical careers, and personify the ethos of excellence-and international collaboration-CMCF aims to foster. Attendees were drawn from every region of Ukraine, extending CMCF’s impact beyond the Greater Lviv region for the first time in the foundation’s history.

Pediatric Surgeons From Eastern Ukraine Participate in 7th Annual Congress of the European Society of Pediatric Enoscopic Surgeons

The Children’s Medical Care Foundation sponsored the participation of eight pediatric surgeons from the Lugansk, Donetsk and Odessa regions of Eastern Ukraine at the 7th Annual Congress of the European Society of Pediatric Endoscopic Surgeons (ESPES) in Wroclaw, Poland, on September 27-29th, 2017.

This conference was chaired by Prof. Dariusz Patkowski, who heads the Pediatric Surgery and Urology Department at Wroclaw University of Medicine, and who himself benefited from CMCF-sponsored supplemental specialized medical training earlier in his distinguished medical career.

Distinguished surgeons from across Europe attended this conference, as did Vasyl Prytula, MD, PhD, Chief Pediatric Surgeon of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine.

CMCF Fellows in attendance included:

  1. Ievgen Mozhaiev – pediatric surgeon, assistant professor, Department of Surgery, Lugansk State Medical University, Severodonetsk Municipal Multiprofile Hospital, Severodonetsk, Lugansk region, Ukraine.
  2. Natalia Tereshchenko – pediatric surgeon, assistant professor, Department of Surgery, Lugansk State Medical University, Severodonetsk Municipal Multiprofile Hospital, Severodonetsk, Lugansk region, Ukraine.
  3. Sergiy Veselyy – pediatric surgeon, medical doctor, professor, head of the Department of Surgery and Pediatric Surgery, Donetsk National Medical University, Kramatorsk, Donetsk region, Ukraine.
  4. Oleg Yudin – pediatric surgeon, assistant of the Department of Surgery and Pediatric Surgery, Donetsk National Medical University, Kramatorsk, Donetsk region, Ukraine.
  5. Dmytro Samofalov – pediatric surgeon, associate professor of the Department of Pediatric Surgery, Odessa National Medical University, Odessa, Ukraine.
  6. Iona Dilanyan – pediatric surgeon, Deputy Chair of Pediatric Surgery, Odessa Regional Pediatric Hospital, Odessa, Ukraine.
  7. Anastasia Kvashnina – assistant professor, Department of Pediatric Surgery, Odessa National Medical University, Odessa, Ukraine.
  8. Sergii Pavlenko – pediatric surgeon, assistant professor, Department of Pediatric Surgery, Odessa National Medical University, Odessa, Ukraine.

We look forward to continuing this successful collaboration with our Ukrainian pediatric surgeons.





CMCF Board Member Organizes XXXIII International Symposium of the Polish Neonatal Society

Prof. Maria-Katarzyna Borszewska-Kornacka Delivering Opening Remarks at the Symposium

Prof. Maria Katarzyna Borszewska-Kornacka, President of the Polish Neonatal Society, and a member of CMCF’s Board of Directors since 1990, organized the XXXIII International Symposium of the Polish Neonatal Society, which took place on October 12-14 of 2017 in Krakow, Poland.

This outstanding medical convening brought together leading experts in the care of newborns from Poland, Ukraine, the United States, Germany, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and the United Kingdom to share the results of their leading edge research, discuss diagnostic protocols and debate current controversies in the field.

The Children’s Medical Care Foundation was proud to sponsor the participation of the following 10 Ukrainian neonatologists:

Prof. Yuriy Korzhynskyy
Hrystyna Zelizna
Yuriy Kuzminoff
Nataliya Blonar
Zoryana Ivanyuk
Andriy Bilous
Nataliya Myshchyshyn
Olha Kasperovych
Sehiy Fomin
Anzhelika Bysheva




CMCF Mourns Passing of Longtime Board Member

Longtime Children’s Medical Care Foundation Board Member Professor Michael P. Sherman passed away on September 22nd 2017.

Though extremely humble in demeanor, Professor Sherman was a towering figure in the field of Neonatology, whose contributions to its evolution spanned half of a century.

The expansiveness of his expertise was eclipsed only by his eagerness to share it. Generations of physicians became much better caregivers because of his teaching and mentorship-and countless children live healthier, fuller lives as a result.

Neither Children’s Medical Care Foundation, nor the field of Neonatology itself would be what it is today without the super-sized heart of this exceptional humanitarian.

Michael, you will live in our hearts and memories forever.

CMCF Board Member Honored for Excellence

Dr. Katrina Tesmer

2016 Physician of Excellence


Dr. Katrina Tesmer


Long-time CMCF Board member Dr. Katrina Tesmer was honored as an Orange County Physician of Excellence for the second straight year by the Orange County Medical Association.

Recipients of this prestigious award are nominated annually by their peers and patients for exemplifying the highest standards in health care provision, for the outstanding leadership qualities they exhibit, including the teaching and mentoring of younger physicians, and for their humanitarian service.

Dr. Tesmer is a neonatologist at Children’s Hospital of Orange County where she has practiced medicine for seventeen years and is Director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at Orange County Global Medical Center.

We congratulate Dr. Tesmer for this well deserved honor!