Controversy in French Guayana Over the Project to Hire Cuban Doctors

French Guayana needs at least 15 dental surgeons, three oncologists, and five pulmonologists. (OPS)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, February 22, 2019 — The project announced in the middle of February to contract Cuban doctors to address the shortage of personnel in French Guayana is facing resistance from the organizations of national professional health workers, who question the technical skills of the Cuban doctors.

Rodolphe Alexandre, President of Guayana, explained to the AFP agency that last Tuesday, February 12, he met in Paris, together with Senators George Patient and Antoine Karam, with the Cuban ambassador in France, Elio Rodríguez Perdomo, and with the Vice Minister of Health Marcia Cobas, to discuss the details.

Since 2005, Guayana has had an ordinance that permits the hiring of doctors outside the European Union.

Alexandre explained that there is a real urgency in Guayana and that the idea would be to bring “one hundred specialized (Cuban) doctors into hospitals to overcome the medical shortage. At least 15 dental surgeons, three oncologists, five pulmonologists,” said the French agency.

The President added that it would be the Cuban State that would directly receive payment for the service.

If the project manages to be finalized, he would study on a case-by-case basis the candidates who want to offer their services overseas.

This possible new agreement happened two months after the exit from Cuba of Mais Médicos, the program that supported 8,471 Cuban doctors in Brazil.

The rift with Jair Bolsonaro, who wanted to revise the agreement so the professionals would stop receiving their salaries through the Government of Havana, caused the precipitous return of the doctors from the South American country.

Translated by Regina Anavy


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