HEALTH IN CUBA, THE TWO FACES OF A MYTH
HEALTH IN CUBA, THE TWO FACES OF A MYTH
Julián Antonio Mone Borrego, professor and president of the Miguel
Valdés Tamayo Cuban Movement
BARACOA, CUBA- March 30, 2007 (Professor Julián Antonio Mone
Borrego/Puenteinfocubamiami.org) – The general condition of hospitals
that provide medical services strictly for the Cuban people are deplorable.
Santa Clara's provincial Hospital has been invaded by a plague of
cockroaches that contaminate utensils, foods and medical material.
The poor elaboration of foods, along with the unsanitary conditions
heaped up the critical conditions of this hospital.
CIEGO DE ÁVILA
Hospitals "Antonio Luaces Iraola" and the "Hospital General Docente
"Roberto Rodriguez", both located in the province of Ciego de Ávila, are
lacking first aid medical tools, supplies and equipment such as
anesthesia, needles, syringes and aerosol mouthpieces. Resulting in the
delay of urgent surgical procedures and ultimately, forcing the
suspension of all surgical procedures.
The waiting list for patients in need of medical procedures is endless.
Improper protocol for sterilization of syringes and other hospital
instruments along with the reuse of syringes and other medical tools
without prior sterilization, expose hospital patients to contracting
Provincial hospitals Manuel Artime Domenech, Amalia Simoni, and "Ana
Betancourt" a maternal and neonatal hospital, in the province of
Camagüey, lack the necessary resources for laboratory tests, including
for Alpha-fetoprotein test, diabetes, thyroid and renal operation tests.
Irregularities and abuses against pregnant women pose serious mortal
danger to mother and child during the pregnancy and during childbirth.
In the provincial hospital "Ernesto Guevara" of Las Tunas, patients
remain in a depressed and erosive atmosphere due to the prevailing poor
health and unsanitary conditions of the health installation. The
ceiling's facility is filled with all kinds of animal's nests.
There are frequent and prolonged power blackouts in the hospital Juan
Paz Camejo, located in the municipality of Sagua de Tánamo, forcing
patients and doctors to use petroleum lamps where fumes coming out of
these devices cause breathing disorders to patients.
The above brief synthesis is just a sample of the daily deterioration of
the health care facilities that cater only to ordinary Cubans.
Added to the above mentioned calamities is the lack of ambulances, the
frustration of doctors and paramedic personnel whose demands for
supplies is ignored by authorities in the health care system toppled by
a huge amount of paperwork, long shifts, poor diet and low wages
exacerbated the daily misery of the medical staff working in these
Let us distinguish the other face of the Cuban medical myth, revealed by
Viñales Tours; one of many Cuban entities dedicated to the deliberate
establishment of a kind of "medical apartheid" that consists of the
creation of a health tourism industry and according to their promoters,
the Cuban Health Care System is based on the principle that health care
in Cuba is "a right of the people". They obviously forgot to clarify
which kind of people they were referring to.
Upon the creation of this health tourism industry, the Cuban regime
customized medical units exclusively for tourists in each of the hotels
that are part of the above mentioned tourism chain, where emergency
medical care is offered twenty four hours, seven days a week.
International pharmacies are promoted as having an array supply of both
foreign and Cuban-manufactured medicines and high-tech medical equipment
and services items not available to most Cubans. It would be interesting
if the Cuban government is willing to provide records of what percentage
of these products are available to the ordinary Cuban population.
Reporting from Baracoa for the Information Bridge Cuba Miami, Julián
Antonio Mone Borrego, professor and president of the Miguel Valdés
Tamayo Cuban Movement. Given with the collaboration of Plantados Hasta
la Libertad y la Democracia en Cuba, on the 24th day of March, 2007.