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Revolutionary Doctors: How Venezuela and Cuba Are Changing the World 's Conception of Health Care Paperback – 1 May 2011


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Product details

  • Paperback: 258 pages
  • Publisher: monthly review press (1 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1583672397
  • ISBN-13: 978-1583672396
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.5 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 784,129 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Steve Brouwer is one of the nation's best front-line reporters from the ongoing class war."-Barbara Ehrenreich,

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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is in very good condition, I've not read it myself as it's a present for a friend, but it arrived in good time. Thank you. :-)
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By William Podmore on 10 July 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a fascinating and informative book.

Between 1961 and 2008, Cuba sent 185,000 medical specialists to work in 103 nations. The Cuban-Venezuelan project Misión Milagro has provided free eye surgery to more than 1.5 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Between 1998 and 2007, Cuban medical personnel in Haiti conducted almost 15 million patient visits that helped bring big changes to Haiti's people. Life span increased from 54 to 61, and the maternity death rate, infant mortality rate and child mortality rate all fell by more than half.

After the 2010 earthquake, the US Navy treated 871 patients and performed 843 surgical operations in seven weeks. In the same period, Cuban medical brigades treated 227,443 patients and performed 6,499 surgical operations. In the USA, the organisation Project Censored named "Cuba Provided the Greatest Medical Aid to Haiti after the Earthquake" as one of 2010's outstanding stories ignored by the corporate media.

By 2009, Cuba had 74,880 doctors, one for every 150 citizens, more than the USA's one for every 417. In 2008, Cuba's infant mortality rate was 5/1,000, the USA's was 7/1,000; and Cuba's mortality rate of under-5s was 6/1,000, the USA's was 8/1,000.

Cuba has achieved all this in the teeth of the US state's 50-year assault on Cuba which has included invasions, terrorist bombings and sabotage, assassinations (attempted and achieved), biological warfare, the economic blockade, lying propaganda, disinformation and media sabotage.

James Cason, head of the US Interests Section, was told in 2002 to create so much `chaos' that Cuba would expel him, causing a complete break in diplomatic relations. Cuba did not fall into the trap.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 6 reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
A Vision that Renews My Hope 19 Aug. 2011
By Cynthia Crowner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Like the author of this book, I am the child of a doctor in the US. My dad was old fashioned--worked in an under-served rural area, made housecalls with his little black bag, and often took produce instead of cash from locals who could not afford to pay. But even with his commitment, I was aware how hard it was for many to access health care in our area. We just didn't have enough doctors for these rural areas of our nation and still don't.
So when I visited Cuba in 1978 and visited local neighborhood clinics spread evenly throughout the nation so that all citizens could have access to quality health care, I was impressed. How could a poor developing country be doing this while the rich neighbor to the North couldn't get its act together?!
I visited Cuba a couple of times during the 1990's "Special Period" when the fall of the Soviet Union had led to an economic crisis for a nation dependent on trade with the USSR and its former allies. While the structure of the health care system was still in tact, medicine was in short supply and many doctors were strapped for cash as they were paid in pesos in an economy where dollars were becoming the most stable currency (yes, in spite of the embargo). I remember crying at the state the medical system had fallen into. My hope died. . .

This summer, more than a decade later, I read Steve Brouwer's inspirational book, "Revolutionary Doctors" and my hope was renewed. By sharing in great detail with ample documentation, not only personal stories of what the Cuban doctors are doing at home but also in Venezuela where the author lived for several years, I was able to see that the vision has not died and that Cuba has rebounded and is not alone in developing universal health care for all. The vision is spreading and altruistic Cuban doctors are helping Venezuela, Nicaragua, Bolivia and other nations to realize the dream.
As a Christian minister, I am elated that the vision of healing the sick, "the least of these", the poor, is taking place even in nations where the majority of the populations are poor. I want to encourage you to read this book. If these nations can pursue health care as a human right for all, why can't we do it in our own? Let the vision spelled out in this book encourage us all.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Revolutionary Doctors: An Eye-Opener 14 Sept. 2011
By Patrizia - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I didn't know much about Cuban doctors when I read this book. I certainly didn't realize that they spend six years training to be doctors and learn everything that doctors do in U.S. medical schools. Nor had I any idea how committed the Cubans are to the medical education of foreigners--and particularly their fellow Latin Americans.

The Cuban/Venezuelan model of universal health care--even for people in remote, poor villages--calls for doctors who are willing to live for years at a time under primitive conditions without much income. Inspired by the vision and the example of Che Guevara--himself a doctor--the Cuban and Venezuelan doctors seem almost saintly in their desire to serve.

Steve Brouwer's calm tone and measured optimism speak to the underlying anxieties that we Americans, with our intensely individualistic system, have about more cooperative and communitarian ways of life. Brouwer tells a heartening story in which the stock of human goodness in the world is enlarged--but he tells it as an educational parable, backed up with facts and statistics. *Revolutionary Doctors* is thus not merely a book to entertain and to satisfy curiosity--it is a book to help readers to a more enlightened perspective on the practice of medicine. For those who fear that universal health care would be inferior, this book is reassuring, demonstrating that quality health care for all is an attainable goal.

In extending to the isolated rural poor the kinds of medical services that prosperous urbanites take for granted, Cuba and Venezuela are able to offer, not only better health, but a better way of life for all. Read this fine book to be inspired and moved by the remarkable story it tells and to challenge received notions about the distribution of medical resources and services.
Five Stars 15 Mar. 2015
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Product was delivered early. The exact right product.
3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Excellent study of medical internationalism 10 July 2012
By William Podmore - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is a fascinating and informative book.

Between 1961 and 2008, Cuba sent 185,000 medical specialists to work in 103 nations. The Cuban-Venezuelan project Misión Milagro has provided free eye surgery to more than 1.5 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Between 1998 and 2007, Cuban medical personnel in Haiti conducted almost 15 million patient visits that helped bring big changes to Haiti's people. Life span increased from 54 to 61, and the maternity death rate, infant mortality rate and child mortality rate all fell by more than half.

After the 2010 earthquake, the US Navy treated 871 patients and performed 843 surgical operations in seven weeks. In the same period, Cuban medical brigades treated 227,443 patients and performed 6,499 surgical operations. In the USA, the organisation Project Censored named "Cuba Provided the Greatest Medical Aid to Haiti after the Earthquake" as one of 2010's outstanding stories ignored by the corporate media.

By 2009, Cuba had 74,880 doctors, one for every 150 citizens, more than the USA's one for every 417. In 2008, Cuba's infant mortality rate was 5/1,000, the USA's was 7/1,000; and Cuba's mortality rate of under-5s was 6/1,000, the USA's was 8/1,000.

Cuba has achieved all this in the teeth of the US state's 50-year assault on Cuba which has included invasions, terrorist bombings and sabotage, assassinations (attempted and achieved), biological warfare, the economic blockade, lying propaganda, disinformation and media sabotage.

James Cason, head of the US Interests Section, was told in 2002 to create so much `chaos' that Cuba would expel him, causing a complete break in diplomatic relations. Cuba did not fall into the trap. Instead it charged 75 Cubans, who had collaborated with Cason, with taking aid from a foreign power in order to engage in activities harmful to the government (which is also a crime in the USA and most other countries).

In 2005 the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) paid the governments of Poland, Romania and the Czech Republic $2.4 million to fund their anti-Cuba groups. In 2006, the US government set up a `Cuba Fund for a Democratic Future' with an $80 million budget. In 2010 the US Agency for International Development was sending 50 people a month into Cuba to deliver `technical and financial' assistance to `dissidents'.

The State Department lied that the USA was not involved in the 2002 coup attempt in Venezuela, but its own Office of Inspector General reported, "It is clear that NED, Department of Defense (DOD), and other U.S. assistance programs provided training, institution building, and other support to individuals and organizations understood to be actively involved in the brief ouster of the Chavez government."

The US state under Obama is still doing its worst to destroy the wonderful health care achieved by Cuba and Venezuela.
2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Couldn't go past page 30. 22 Feb. 2014
By ELI A. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
This lady is terribly misinformed. I've lived in Vzla my whole life and this book is a bunch of BS. It may sound hopeful and nice to people living outside of Venezuela, but this book is far from reality for those of us living here. If what you're looking for is a fairy tale, then by all means read it, but let me tell you, there are better books on the subject out there. Look elsewhere.
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