Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Why Cubans live longer

There is a detailed investigation of why the results obtained by the Cuban health system (e.g. in terms of life expectancy, or cancer survival rates) are better than in the US and at least as good as in the UK.

First world results on a third world budget

Prevention seems to be a key issue. I haven't been really ill in the last 10 years or so, but recently visited our family doctor to suggest she might want to check whether my old heart's still beating. Over in Germany, at my ripe old age, I would be bullied into taking part in regular cancer screening. But here, nothing. The doctor looked at me as though I'd landed from another planet. Next door was a private clinic, offering a general health check for 500 pounds, she suggested, while measuring my blood pressure.

The way things are going here, I reckon Cuba will overtake us, too. Recently, the UK came out in the bottom third of a European league table of cancer survival rates, surrounded by countries from the former Soviet union or Yugoslavia.

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