Posted by: Tony Carson | 27 July, 2007

8 US docs graduate from Havana U

0726 01

Eight American students have graduated from a Cuban medical school after six years of free tuition, giving a fresh boost to the reputation of the communist government’s health care system.

The first class of US graduates from the Latin American School of Medicine, a Fidel Castro brainchild on Havana’s outskirts, plan to return home and take board exams for licenses to work as doctors in US hospitals.

The Americans were among more than 2,100 students from about 25 countries who received diplomas this week in a high-profile ceremony at Havana’s Karl Marx theatre. The six women and two men, all from US ethnic minority backgrounds, said they would use their skills to treat poor people, in keeping with the humanitarian ethos of the school.

“Health care is not seen as a business in Cuba,” Kenya Bingham, a 29-year-old Californian, told the Associated Press. “When you are sick they are not going to try to charge you or turn you away if you don’t have insurance. We have studied medicine with a humanitarian approach.” From the Guardian via CommonDreams

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