John Overmyer

Las huellas asiáticas en África

CAMBRIDGE – No miren ahora, pero el capitalismo --del que tan mal se habla en estos días de recesión plagados de rescates-- está cambiando inexorablemente el panorama africano. Lo que es distinto ahora es que viene de China y la India, y no de los bastiones convencionales del poder capitalista.

Devi Shetty, un célebre cardiocirujano de Bangalore, proporciona servicios de salud a las masas de la India mediante su grupo hospitalario Narayana. Hace algunos años presencié sus primeros experimentos en telemedicina rural, especialmente en los estados de Karnataka y Bengala occidental. En la visita que hice el mes pasado, el muro estaba adornado con un gran mapa de Karnataka lleno de alfileres de colores que indican que ahora da servicio a la mayoría de las capitales distritales de las zonas más remotas del estado. Además, un mapa del mundo mostraba la atención que da a zonas rurales de África oriental y el sureste de Asia y la habitación se ha ampliado para mostrar un alcance global en constante expansión.

Todo eso procede de una experiencia –técnica y sociológica—cuidadosamente adquirida en la prestación de asesoría médica especializada mediante servicios de teleconferencias apoyados con enlaces vía satélite. El equipo de Shetty ha participado con éxito en consultas de telemedicina–de múltiples especialidades, con servicio ininterrumpido y complementadas con educación continua--  con hospitales de 14 países africanos. Este esfuerzo es parte del ambicioso proyecto de red electrónica panafricana del entonces presidente indio A. P. J. Abdul Kalam para enlazar a las 53 capitales africanas con instalaciones de atención terciaria en toda la India.

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