Tkachenko Oleksandr Ivanovych: The whole team hopes for fair elections of the rector for further development of the beloved university

Tkachenko Oleksandr Ivanovych, doctor of medical sciences. Ph.D., Professor, Head of the Department of Surgery №3

Being a good doctor is a hard work. What drew your attention to this profession?

When it came to choosing career, I did not hesitate to choose the profession of a doctor – as the most humane of the professions on which human health, and sometimes life itself depends. At the same time, I understood well that this work requires a lot of dedication, that you need to be ready for a round-the-clock working day, providing the necessary assistance to a sick person who needs my presence. Not all my classmates remained faithful to their chosen profession, some left medicine. Those who remain true to their choice enjoy this work, so they feel happy, despite all the difficulties, sleepless nights and high responsibility for the patient. And that’s exactly how I always feel when I wear a white coat and communicate with a patient.

Why did the choice fall on Odessa Medical Institute?

There was no question for me was not about choosing a university, because Odessa Medical Institute named after M.I.  Pirogov was always authoritative and prestigious. My dream came true – I entered the institute. And I am infinitely grateful to my teachers for the knowledge they gave us, and to my classmates for their sincere friendship. The purity and decency of the relationship during our studies and now, many years later, give us the opportunity to look each other in the eye openly and fondly remember the joint student years. I am proud to be a graduate of our beloved university.

Do you really think that Odessa National Medical University, formerly Odessa Medical Institute, gives good knowledge?

In answering this question, I believe that the answer should be divided into two components: the knowledge provided by teachers and the knowledge that students receive (or want to receive) during their studies. In the end, everything depends on the desire and motivation of the student, however, the motivation of the student depends on the teacher as well. I will say by my own example that I wanted to become a good doctor, so I wanted to get all the necessary knowledge both while studying at a medical institute and in the internship based on it. Unforgettable impressions were left from the lectures of Professor Ruslan Fedorovich Makulkin. They were interesting for everyone and helped to understand the complex material in a very accessible form. From the very first years, operating rooms at the institute’s bases were available for me and my other classmates who were interested in surgery.

The level of training of a doctor is immediately assessed by his patients and colleagues. After graduating from medical school, I was sent to work as a surgeon at the Comintern Central District Hospital, where from the first days I had to rely on the knowledge and skills acquired at the institute. The result of this work to this day are warm memories and gratitude of the residents of the area, friendship with colleagues with whom I had to work. After working in the district hospital there was training in a clinical residency on the basis of the regional clinical hospital under the guidance of Professor O.P. Dotsenko. It was a wonderful school that gave me the opportunity to improve my knowledge and skills as a surgeon. And then – a difficult path to the title of professor and the head of the department. And I’m no exception.

Among my groupmates, a lot  ran the gamut from student to professorlike Karpenko Yu.I., the head of the Department of Internal Medicine №1 with a course of cardiovascular pathology! The whole south of Ukraine knows him!

In general, our university has always been characterized by high quality teaching, from the day of its formation. Outstanding scientists worked here in different years: V.V. Podvysotsky, O.O. Bogomolets, D.K. Zabolotnii, V.P. Filatov, M.A. Yasynivsky and many others, whose names are known throughout the world. Today ONMedU is a member of the International and European Association of Universities, cooperates in many areas with leading medical universities in America and Europe, and remains a pioneer in our country to introduce new technologies in the training of future doctors.

Do you think University clinics are really needed for training?

One of the assets of our university is its University Clinics. We are proud that the first University Clinic in independent Ukraine was revived in Odessa. Everyone knows that the initiator of the restoration of the University Clinic of Odessa National Medical University was Academician V.M. Zaporozhan. He realized his dream and created an effective model of clinic at our university, which combines the best pedagogical, scientific and medical potential. The role of university clinics in training students and doctors is difficult to overestimate. Students and trainees have the opportunity to learn to use state-of-the-art equipment in the treatment of patients. In some areas of surgery and oncology, our university became the first in Ukraine. For example, the experience of using hyperthermic chemoperfusion in cancer, including isolated chemoperfusion of the extremities. The project of creating a university clinic ONMedU has become a pilot for the whole of Ukraine, and we are proud of it.

In your opinion, is the rector’s office of Valerii Mykolaiovych Zaporozhan a failure or progress for the university?

During the leadership of Valerii Mykolaiovych there were key changes in the status of the university: it became a state and then a national university. It is clear to everyone that each of these degrees of university status must be met, and this is the enormous work of its employees and management. And there were really many achievements under the leadership of Academician Zaporozhan. Here are some: the development of endoscopic surgery and gynecology with the creation of one of the largest associations with representation in the presidium of the European Association, the revival of the first University Clinic in independent Ukraine, attracting foreign students, the first medical university to start teaching in English, simulation training. And this is a small part of what was done during the time of Valerii Mykolaiovych at the university.

Why did the situation arise in 2018, when the work of the university was actually blocked?

There is a saying: “If you have an implacable enemy, then you have done a lot of good for him once.” Unfortunately, this happens so often in life. Everyone knows that only friends and people close to you betray. People with a different opinion are mostly visible, and their opposition is not a betrayal. The reason for the “riot” at the university, in my opinion, was the lack of a moral component in those students who were helped a lot by Valerii Mykolaiovych. This situation, imposed by opponents, was not aimed at improving the work of the university. The “rebels” who were employees of the university and hold superior positions at our university, no one prevented them from influencing the process of creating a new progressive management model that would contribute to the further development of the university. It is obvious that their main goal was to seize power. Realizing the possible consequences of such a confrontation, the whole team defended the university. Now we hope for a fair election of the rector, which will contribute to the further development of our beloved university.