La transición en Cuba – opina un investigador cubano

Planning for Cuba’s transition?
August 16 2006
Pedro A. Lopez-Saura, Researcher, Center for Biological Research, Havana, Cuba.

Dear Sir:
It is surprising that such a rigorous and serious journal, publishes such an editorial, based, indeed, on an absolute ignorance of what is happening or can happen in Cuba. Cuba’s healthcare system already made a very large transition in 1959 to the best indexes among the so called “third world” countries, even in some cases better than some of the so called “first world” (please look at WHO reports), particularly as compared to the United States. In fact, if the Lancet pretends to show and study how healthcare can be improved in developing countries, it should look at Cuba’s case as an example (which has been never taken into account). No one in Cuba wishes to go back. At the same time the Lancet should not ignore the effort that Cuba does to improve healthcare in other developing countries. For example, in your reports about the recent earthquake in Pakistan, there has been no mention to the more than 2000 Cuban doctors and nurses that worked in the very intensively damaged zones for more than 6 months. This has been highly acknowledged by the Pakistani people and government. At present there are more than 30000 Cuban doctors throughout Latin America, Africa and Asia, working in the mountains and rural zones, giving care to people that otherwise are not reached by their countries’ mostly private healthcare systems. The main medical journal in the world should pay attention to the so called “Operación Milagro” (Miracle Operation) in which more than 200 000 blind patients from Cuba, Venezuela, and other Latin American and Caribbean countries have recovered vision. Our closest neighbor should dedicate the 80 million USD you mentioned to improve the health of more than 40 million people they have without health coverage. On the contrary this sum will be used in Cuba to promote uneasiness and terrorism. I suggest the Lancet to review its editorials with the same rigour it does with the articles sent there.

Competing Interests: A Cuban doctor

References: World Health Organisation. WORLD HEALTH STATISTICS 2006…



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