Cuba-Venezuela eye program treats millions

Operation Miracle, a humanitarian social program created by the governments of Cuba and Venezuela, has made it possible to carry out over 1 million eye surgeries in the South American nation over the last eight years, the Cuban News Agency said.

“We’re operating some 5000 patients a week, the same amount of patients who benefited annually in Venezuela before the beginning of the program,” said national coordinator Manuel Pacheco, cited by the Venezuelan News Agency.

Operation Miracle began in July 2004, taking care of patients with few economic resources who had eye problems.

At first, patients travelled to Havana, where more than 200,000 were operated on in one year, while the Venezuelan government set in motion an investment plan to start these services in different hospitals.

Since 2005, within the context of that mission, over 33,000 patients have been seen in Venezuela, coming from Ecuador, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Chile, Paraguay and Argentina, while arrangements to benefit the population of Curacao advance.