Cuba and Canada sign agreement on health tourism for the elderly
HAVANA – The Comercializadora de Servicios Médicos Cubanos (CSMC) SA and the Canadian tour operator COGIR, on Wednesday signed an agreement in Havana for the implementation of a program dedicated to the medical care of elderly Canadian tourists.
Dr Yamila Ramona de Armas Águila, first vice-president of CSMC, and Bruno Desautels, secretary of COGIR, a leading investor and developer of residences for the elderly in Canada, signed the document.
“For a happy age” is the name of the program, conceived for groups of autonomous older adults, aged from 75 to 85, who have good physical and mental condition and visit Cuba for a stay of two to three months in the winter, said De Armas Águila.
The board of directors of the entity, which belongs to the ministry of public health, said that the first group of Canadian travelers will arrive in November at Varadero beach, located 140 kilometers from Havana.
This comprehensive medical-tourism product will promote healthy lifestyles and, if necessary, may include nursing care, transportation to and from the airport upon arrival and departure to Cuba.
CMSC currently manages and operates specialized hospitals and clinics in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, together with the contribution of human resources for the provision of services.
Bruno Desautels, secretary of COGIR, expressed his satisfaction with the Cuban program, whose accommodation will be in a building of the Marina Varadero hotel and the apartments are equipped for this market with single rooms or for more than one person, in case they require companions.
“The Canadian population is aging and people want to travel and there are no products to serve them but I think that with Medical Services and Meliá we will achieve the goal,” he remarked.
He expressed the interest that in the coming years it could be extended to other facilities, taking into account the accelerated aging of the population.
COGIR owns and manages more than 40 housing complexes for more than 10,000 people of that age group in Canada, he noted.