Cuba Medical News

In January 2013, the Cuban healthcare system was highlighted in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Center was given the international quality certification ISO 9001-2008.

Vidatox is a holistic Cuban cancer drug made from scorpion venom and helps to increase quality of life.

Cuba launches Servimed, a for-profit medical company - In a sign of change for Cuba’s healthcare sector, a new for-profit medical services company bowed before an international business audience at the International Havana Fair earlier this month.

Empresa Comercializadora de Servicios Médicos de Cuba S.A., also known as Servimed, is a state company that bundles the 16 Cuban institutions that already provide more than 100 types of health services to foreign individuals on the island, ranging from cancer treatment and drug addiction programs, to dentistry and plastic surgery.

Servimed also coordinates the bigger-volume business of government-to-government services. According to company head Ismael Castillo, Servimed already provides for-pay medical services by Cuban personnel to governments of 15 countries.

For-pay medical services to other governments are not new. Panama, for instance, announced last year it will pay for the hands-on specialty training of Panamanian doctors in Cuban hospitals. The same year, Qatar agreed with Cuba to pay for an undisclosed number of Cuban physicians to serve at a recently-opened 54-bed hospital in the oil-rich country. Cuba also agreed last year to manage and staff eye surgery centers in hospitals in China and Algeria.

Servimed, according to Castillo, is providing services to 15 countries this year, including Algeria, China, Portugal, Jamaica, Qatar, Surinam and Ukraine.

Medical exports are already a billion-dollar reality for Cuba...

Cuban Medical Center Trains Foreign Experts

The Pedro Kourí Tropical Medicine Institute (IPK), in Havana, has trained experts from 80 countries.

IPK executives pointed out that 38,000 foreign experts have been trained at the center.

Of the total number of specialists who have received training on infectious diseases, 33,000 were Cuban and 5,000 came from Latin America, Africa, Asia and Europe, in addition to the United States, Canada and Australia.

The training has focused on tuberculosis, dengue fever, leptospirosis, vector control and epidemiology of infectious diseases, among other topics.

In addition, master courses have been given on bacteriology and microbiology, tropical diseases, virology, parasitology, entomology and vector control.

The IPK collaborates with scientific institutions and universities from the United States (Harvard and Yale) and the United Kingdom, among other countries.

BioCen Plays Major Role in Cuba's Health Sector

The Centro Nacional de Biopreparados (BioCen), in western Cuba, has 17 years' experience in producing medications.

During that period, the center has produced more than 200 million doses of different kinds of vaccines for Cuba's health system and for export.

That includes vaccines against Hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae, and Tetravalent and Pentavalent vaccines, just to mention some.

BioCen also produces the tonic Trofin, streptokinase to treat myocardial infarction, the transference factor and erythropoietin.

The center also produces vaccines against allergies and nearly 130 kits used in microbiology and clinical labs.

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