Caracas, 13 August 2015
Fuente: Communication and Information of the Executive Secretariat of ALBA-TCP
From April 2015, screenings for the Miracle Mission Foundation were initiated in the Eastern Caribbean within the framework of the cooperation relations promoted by the ALBA-TCP with the support of PDV Caribe, a subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela in charge of the operation of the PETROCARIBE Agreement. The initiative started in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, with a result of 1,178 people with visual affections being treated.
In this sense, 252 patients underwent surgical intervention in the last few weeks in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The surgeries were performed by three (03) medical missions composed of eight (08) specialists. This was the first time that the Miracle Mission performs surgical interventions in the Eastern Caribbean.
In addition, between July and August of this year, twenty-four (24) patients from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and 12 patients from Antigua and Barbuda travelled to our country to be treated under the programme Miracle Mission achieving a significant improvement of their Visual capability.
On August 9th, 13 surgical interventions were carried out in Antigua and Barbuda. Different ophthalmic and surgical interventions will be carried out during the next 5 weeks. It is expected to treat 347 patients through this collaborative initiative.
Carlos Perez, Venezuelan ambassador to Antigua & Barbuda, stated that a team of medical officials is in charge of the procedures, and that “in the next six weeks, we will have six different medical teams from Venezuela to complete the whole process of surgeries in Antigua.”
According to the ambassador, an agreement between the governments of Venezuela and Antigua and Barbuda was followed by the screening of an estimated 1,500 residents in May. After that screening, 347 patients qualified for surgeries for pterygium (growth of pink, fleshy tissue on the white of the eye) and cataracts.
The Venezuelan representative explained that over 500 surgeries will be performed because some patients need to have more than one surgery. The surgeries will be conducted at the Mount St John’s Medical Centre.
During the last quarter of 2015, the Miracle Mission plans to operate in Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, as informed by the President of PDV Caribe and Executive Secretary of the ALBA-TCP, Bernardo Alvarez Herrera.
The Miracle Mission was launched on July 8th, 2004, beginning with a first trip of Venezuelans to Cuba, who benefited from surgical interventions for cataracts. The initiative continued until August 25th, 2005, when the Presidents of Cuba and Venezuela, Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez, signed the Sandino Commitment, in which the parties agreed that surgical interventions would be performed to six million people with visual affections during a period of 10 years.