TCM expo in Cuba provides a healthy option

HAVANA - Cuba held a traditional Chinese medicine expo recently at the University of Havana. Organized by Havana's Confucius Institute, the outdoor event gathered university students, experts, doctors, and the general public.

Yorbelis Rosell, director of the institute, says that the expo was aimed at expanding knowledge of TCM across the country and improving the work links between scientific institutions.

"The research on TCM is a paramount priority for our staff and students," she says. "We strongly believe that there are many topics we can still examine and many things we can learn from Chinese culture."

The expo featured exhibitions, massage sessions and acupuncture workshops.

Evelyn Gonzalez, president of the Cuban Society of Bioenergetic and Naturalist Medicine, says that TCM practices have been useful in the treatment of many ailments affecting the island's population.

"The efficacy of the TCM is undoubted," she says. "We are not only using herbal medicines to cure different illnesses, but also acupuncture, moxibustion and massage, among other techniques."

At present, TCM is integrated into the public health system in the Caribbean nation from neighborhood doctor's offices to mainstream hospitals, according to Johann Perdomo, head of the Department of Natural and Traditional Medicine at the Cuban Ministry of Public Health.

"We are providing our experts with specialized training on TCM, so it can help promote healthy standards of living among people," he says. "The study of the traditional medicine is an integral part of our health approach."