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Medical Services chief who criticised poor quality of tourniquets is severely reprimanded

Saturday, 26 August 2023, 08:41
Medical Services chief who criticised poor quality of tourniquets is severely reprimanded
Tourniquets mentioned by volunteers. Photo: Facebook

Anton Shevchuk, Head of the Medical Service of the 82nd Separate Air Assault brigade, who requested that Medical Forces Command replace poor-quality Chinese tourniquets and asked social activist Oksana Korchynska to help with this, has been given a "severe reprimand."

Source: Anton Shevchuk in a comment to Ukrainska Pravda; screenshots of parts of the order posted on Twitter; conclusion of the Military Law Enforcement Service available to Ukrainska Pravda

Quote: "As soon as I arrived at the brigade at the end of April, I asked the then medical services chief about the first-aid kits. He said that the first-aid kits had been issued, each with two tourniquets, and there were no problems.

Then, on 11-12 July, when we were preparing to join the fighting, I checked the first-aid kits and saw Chinese tourniquets with a German sticker and Lithuanian instructions – that shook me a little... I replaced the tourniquets from the brigade's stocks for some guys who were already performing combat missions at that time.

On 12-13 July, I verbally appealed to those who supplied us, those higher up than the brigade [Shevchuk does not name the body in question - UP.], and they told me: either there were no tourniquets, or an investigation involving a commission was needed. On 14 July, I applied to the Medical Forces Command to replace the tourniquets. In a personal conversation with the command, I was told that there were no tourniquets in the warehouses.

On 18 July, I saw Oksana [Korchynska - ed.] and asked her to help change the tourniquets. I got a call, said that a commission from the Medical Forces Command was coming to us to check the quality of the tourniquets – as I later learned, they simply pulled out the packaged tourniquets, the combat doctors applied them to a limb and checked the pulse. Then a post appeared saying the tourniquets did not need to be replaced. The former head of the brigade convinced me that everything was fine with them.

But on 22 July, we received permission to replace the tourniquets, later I applied for the replacement of the occlusive dressings, which were also s**t. They were replaced immediately.

I was told that there had been a big fuss. As far as I understood, there had been two appeals by MPs to the Ukrainian Air Assault Forces – they really wanted to shut me up, to convince everyone that this was because of me, but I didn't even know those MPs.

There was an investigation, I wrote that I initially applied... I did not want to make it a scandal, I understand perfectly well that the country is at war and any attacks on the army are not a positive thing. But I could not let the guys go into battle with the Chinese tourniquets.

I have not yet been reprimanded, although it was issued on 27 July. It concerns the fact that I have demonstrated insubordination."

Details: Officially, the order states that the medical commander of the 82nd Brigade violated five points of the Charter of the Internal Service of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (relating to the duties of a serviceman, the duties of the chief of service, the order and sequence of reports) and one of the points of the Disciplinary Charter of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (relating to the obligations of military discipline).

An official reprimand is the third most severe disciplinary sanction of the nine ones that exist.

Ukrainska Pravda also received from its sources the results of an official audit of the Military Law Enforcement Service of the Armed Forces of 1 August, which in particular concerned the situation with the issuance of poor-quality first-aid kits to the 82nd Brigade. The results of the audit were signed by Volodymyr Hutsol, Head of the Ukrainian Military Law Enforcement Service.

The document, referring to the decision by the commission that visited the brigade from Medical Forces Command, states that "information about the inadequate quality of tourniquets is the unconfirmed personal opinion of the head of the Medical Service A. A. Shevchuk."

This contradicts the result of the inspection of tourniquets by state-owned enterprise Ukrmetrteststandart, which showed that the tourniquets do not maintain the necessary pressure.

And also, in fact, in a statement by Medical Forces Command of 24 July, the command reports that "in order to prevent harm to the life and health of military personnel" it would replace the Chinese Tourniquet AZ-G6 units with high-quality American SOFT-T tourniquets. In the end, they were indeed replaced.

The number of poor-quality tourniquets that the Medical Forces Command initially issued to the 82nd Brigade exceeds 10,000.


  • The story of poor-quality Chinese tourniquets in the 82nd Brigade, which was highlighted on social media on 20 July by volunteer Oksana Korchynska, launched a large public discussion of the problems of tactical medicine in Ukraine.
  • Meanwhile, Medical Forces Command "confirmed the effectiveness of the tourniquets."
  • On 31 July, the Verkhovna Rada Committee on National Security, Defence and Intelligence listened to a report from Medical Forces Command on the situation with tactical medicine and gave it two weeks to check all first-aid kits for military personnel in Ukraine. As of 26 August, no report on this issue has been made public.
  • In mid-August, it was revealed that law enforcement officers were investigating criminal proceedings regarding possible violations in the preparation of first-aid kits for the Armed Forces.

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