Friday, April 8, 2011

National and foreign specialists meet in Holguin

The Hotel Club Amigo in Guardalavaca beach, was the headquarters this week for the the Fourth International Congress on Health and Quality of Life with the participation of specialists from 10 nations from the Americas, Europe, and Africa.

As in the previous meetings (2005, 2007 and 2009), participants exchanged experiences on nutrition, addictions, and AIDS, searching for an improvement in the people's quality of life.

The program for the event included several symposiums, lectures, panels and roudtables, among others. Life expectancy and Transmitted Diseases and HIV-AIDS were among the main topics debated here.

Dr. Orlando Landrove, head of the Cuban National Program of Non Communicable Diseases, said that implementation of healthy policies in defense of individuals has allowed that life expectancy at birth in the Caribbean nation remains around 78 years of age. Cuba registers this rate, which is similar to those of developed countries, as a result of an equitable health care system designed to protect people.

The specialist affirmed that in order to increase life expectancy up to 80 years old, it is necessary to reduce the impact of non communicable diseases, and to stop the process of population aging and the negative effects it brings about.

He stated that alcoholism, sedentary life styles, smoking, and obesity are also negative factors that shorten the life of Cubans and cause a large number of deaths.

On the other hand, Rosaida Ochoa, director of the National Center for the Prevention of Sexually Transmitted Diseases and HIV-AIDS, affirmed that patients suffering from HIV-AIDS are a top priority for the Cuban health system.

She also said that Cuba has succeeded in improving the quality of life of these patients by keeping them under observation in their own communities, where they receive free of charge health care and explained that carrying out prevention campaigns is one of the most effective steps for controlling this disease, declared pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Cuba is making serious efforts to control the disease, and for this purpose it has established joint strategies among different social sectors like education, culture and the media, in addition to reinforcing the prevention work with groups of people over 25 years old.

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