The healthcare volunteering phenomenon in the Russian Federation
Technical paper

The healthcare volunteering phenomenon in the Russian Federation

N.V. Belokopytova, M.M. Pashin, O.O. Salagay, G.G. Nadareyshvili and P.O. Savchuk
Europe and Central Asia
Health and Volunteering

Fast read

  • This paper analyses the key characteristics of volunteering in the health care sector based on the experiences of volunteer-involving organizations in the Russian Federation.
  • Data was collected through a survey conducted in 69 regions to analyse the work of regional governments in engaging volunteers in health care and to identify issues regarding the implementation of volunteering activities in inpatient medical facilities.


The paper found that in the majority of the regions surveyed (61), health volunteering is continuous and long-term, with over 470 organizations engaged in volunteering. The paper also highlights that 75.4 per cent of the surveyed government authorities characterized medical volunteering as “effective”. However, the paper also notes that government recognition of effectiveness does not translate into increased funding of health care for volunteer-involving organizations. The paper found that only 8.6 per cent of regions reported the assignment of additional government funds for the implementation of health care volunteer projects. In other cases, volunteer organizations have other sources of funding.

The paper provides government agencies and volunteer organizations with useful insights and recommendations to strengthen the role and contribution of volunteers in the health care sector. It also highlights the need to enhance the cooperation between volunteer-involving organizations and public health authorities, as well as medical educational and clinical institutions to effectively engage with volunteers.