lunedì, giugno 12, 2006

Cuban doctors “are here to stay”, says Bolivia’s Morales - MercoPress - Falklands-Malvinas

Cuban doctors “are here to stay”, says Bolivia’s Morales

Bolivian president Evo Morales said Sunday that Cuban doctors will remain in the country for an “indefinite period” since they are “performing an invaluable social service”.

“As long as I’m president no Cuban doctor will leave the country”, underlined Morales in response to growing criticism from the opposition and the Bolivian doctors association that are questioning the presence of the Cuban medics.

Morales on Sunday inaugurated a hospital equipped with Venezuelan and Cuban donations in Caracollo, a poor area 100 kilometres south of La Paz.

Addressing the crowd, Morales said that Cuban doctors operated on 20.000 patients “for free” and Cuba not only helps Bolivia with doctors, but also “4.000 Bolivian students are currently taking courses in Havana’s medical schools”.
“Requesting for Cuban doctors to leave is a lack of conscious and social responsibility”, he said.

According to Bolivia’s Health Ministry, during the last few weeks another 400 Cuban doctors arrived in the country, totalling 1.100.

Bolivian medical associations have warned with abandoning their government posts if Cuban doctors are not sent back to the island.

In other Latinamerican countries such as Uruguay, Cuban doctors have been selecting patients for eye operations in Cuba with the trip and stay financed by Venezuela.

This move has irritated the local ophthalmologist societies which consider Cuban doctors are practicing medicine illegally since they haven’t had their degrees revalidates.

However the Uruguayan government argues that Cuban doctors only select patients and perform a service among low income population which would rarely have access to such a “paid” service.

MercoPress - Falklands-Malvinas