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US Economic Blockade Hinders Cuban Orthopedics
cadera fractura f archivoThe over half a century US economic, commercial and financial blockade maintained and hardened by different administrations seated at the White House, hinders Cuban orthopedics and other health services.

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In an exclusive interview with ACN News Agency, Dr. and Professor Rodrigo Alvarez Cambras, head of the National Orthopedic and Traumatology Group gave examples of the genocidal policy which stops equipment for arthroscopy produced in the US from entering the Caribbean island. Cuba has had to go as far as Germany and China to purchase the equipment at higher prices.

He also added that the policy also includes anti-inflammatory medication and those for osteoporosis, sutures, plates and screws made out of steel.

"Another problem is the lack of credits because Cuba cannot use the US dollar in its international transactions. If we want to purchase what is most needed we must do so with another currency and not in USD, said Alvarez Cambras, also President of the Cuban Society of Orthopedics and Traumatology.

The renowned orthopedic talked about the total figure in losses of these over 50 years in particular in the health care system totaling some 2.5 million dollars.

Since April of 2014 to the same period in 2015, which despite the announcements of last December 17th, the unjust and criminal blockade persists and the damages inflicted now total 76 billion 897 million 734 dollars.

The amount can be found in the Cuban report on Resolution 68/8 of the UN General Assembly entitled: "Necessity in ending the economic, commercial and financial blockade of the United States of America against Cuba.

There are products and technologies that we cannot buy because they are produced in the US, they would be cheaper but we must go to third countries making prices higher in addition to risks to the provider due to the extraterritoriality of the anti-Cuba policy.

On the other hand, Alvarez Cambras pointed out that Cuba purchases general medical supplies in Europe, Japan or China and the cost of transportation is higher than if brought from the US or Mexico and reiterated that sometimes transportation is more expensive then the medication itself.

The Frank Pais International Orthopedic Scientific Complex headed by Dr. Alvarez Cambras since its creation is also limited in purchasing prosthesis for the joints of the wrists and hand in patients with rheumatic arthritis since these objects are found in US companies like Small Bone Innovation, Inc.

According to the Cuban report, the European subsidiary SBI refused to supply the product to the island and that is why many patients must travel abroad to get them or undergo temporary surgery in the treatment which does not solve the health problem and increases the costs. / By Iris de Armas Padrino - ACN.

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