Cuba is just 90 miles away from Miami, Florida. It's closer than Mexico, and way closer than Canada. By air or by ocean many Americans can be there sooner than to Hawaii. Only a man made divide separates us Americans --and especially Floridians--from access to Cuban medical and dental care.
I came across this woman's website recently. http://www.dentalfraudinflorida.com/
Scary stuff. Apparently I'm not the only one with concerns about the quality of dental care and the honesty of those selling it.
And it is a business. The next big thing is dental implants. They're expensive, they can and do fail, and are not covered by most (any?) insurance plans.
We can go to Mexico for dental care, and many Americans do. But the cost of traveling there can put it out of reach for lower income Americans. The well known Mexican drug wars are a consideration as well. If you live in the Southern USA, travel to Canada is a s-t-r-e-t-c-h, both geographically and financially.
Enter Cuba. Their medical sytem is legendary for its altruism. They send their doctors all over the world to help people in other countries. The infant mortality rate in Cuba is lower than ours. Cuban life expectancy is equal to ours.
"In the 1990s, Cuba was the first country to develop a meningitis B vaccine. In 2005, Cuba provided cancer treatment technology for a new biotech company in China. Then last year Washington agreed to make an exception to the trade embargo to allow a California firm to test a Cuban cancer treatment." (props to Slate.com)
Since the breakup of its major trading partner--the USSR--and the dawn of the trade embargo against it, Cuba has struggled financially. They have well trained doctors. We have people who can't afford American health care. Ninety miles south of Miami are Cuban doctors who will likely charge a lot less than their American counterparts. We can help each other. Open the door. Start up a dialogue. Tear down the wall.
Bring on the hate mail.