- Ukrainian Pres. Volodymyr Zelenskyy sacked the commander of the country's medical forces over the weekend. In his nightly address on Sunday, Zelenskyy said that Tetiana Ostashchenko was dismissed after a request from Defense Minister Rustem Umerov.1
- Umerov said on Facebook that the reason for the dismissal was 'obvious' to all who served in Ukraine's defense forces. 'These problems were discussed many times,' he said. 'It is time to solve the issues of medical supplies for our soldiers.'2
- Having served in a number of roles before being appointed commander of Ukraine's medical forces, Ostashchenko became the first woman to lead a Ukrainian division when she was given the role in July 2021. A month later she was promoted to brigadier general, becoming the first woman in Ukraine's military to reach that rank. In June, she was promoted again, this time to major general — a further first in her résumé.3
- Announcing her dismissal, Zelenskyy said that she would be replaced by Anatoliy Kazmirchuk, head of the main military hospital in Kyiv.1
- Zelenskyy added that a fundamental shift in how Ukraine treats its soldiers was needed.1
- He said: 'From high-quality tourniquets to full digitalization and transparency in the supplies, from high-quality training to sincere communication with combat medics in those units where the medicine functions properly and efficiently. The experience of efficiency of specific units must be spread on all the defense forces.'1
- Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by Ukrainska Pravda. Ostashchenko has served her country well, but changes are needed in order to enact fundamental reform in how Ukraine treats its soldiers. The overhaul will include modernizing how Ukraine tracks its medical supplies, as well as increasing training to further improve treatment.
- Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by The Kyiv Independent. After reports suggested that Ostashchenko failed to order any new first aid kits for 2023, in addition to reports that said medical equipment ordered from abroad was not adequately checked and was often faulty, a growing number of paramedics and medical staff have called on her to go. It was clear she had to be dismissed.