Blind, autistic boy dies in Havana due to ambulance delay

Cuban child without ambulance

The complaint of mother Maritza Barrios went viral this week. Several social media users shared her despair. Barrios felt desperate and helpless as she saw her son, who is blind and autistic, lying on a stretcher waiting for an ambulance to drive him to the hospital.

People who sympathized with the situation contributed to share a sad post that read:

“Good afternoon. My name is Maritza Barrios. I have my son Andy Agüero Barrios, blind and autistic. I have been at the Rafael Valdes polyclinic since morning waiting for an ambulance. My son needs a transfusion. He has 6.3 hemoglobin points and is defecating blood. The doctor is tired of calling everywhere and no ambulance shows up. A while ago one came with a patient and she didn’t want to take my son.”  

According to what Martiza published, the doctor asked the ambulance driver for a die to put an IV in the child and they wouldn’t even let her do it.

“My son is going to die. I have no way to carry him by myself. I NEED AN AMBULANCE, MY SON IS DYING. I hope they are aware. Please, I need urgent help: an ambulance,” the desperate mother wrote on social networks.

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And so it was. Just six hours later the mother reported that her son had died: 

“Good evening. Forgive me for not answering. I will give the details later, but unfortunately my son passed away at 6 pm and I appreciate the concern. He has just been brought in and I have to dress him. Thank you for the concern.”

Naturally, there were many comments and reactions of sadness, anger and frustration to her Facebook post. 

One user told how she was a victim of the ambulance system when she was 36 weeks pregnant, tested positive for COVID-19 and had to wait, with fever, about 8 hours to be transported to the hospital.

“Then, on a second occasion, at 38 weeks at term with fluid loss, I had to wait 6 hours. On both occasions with danger and risk to the baby’s life.”

Some people left their condolences on the Facebook post, while others questioned her why she didn’t run out with her child in her arms to find a passing car. 

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However, others asked that this mother not be lynched because no one knows what condition her child was in and if she could really carry him.

Others criticized that there is fuel and cars to repress people who dissent from the government and not for ambulances and treatment of the sick.

According to comments, there is only one ambulance available for patients from four municipalities and they cannot always arrive on time. 

Some people even compared that “if that happens in a municipality in Havana, imagine what would happen in a municipality or intricate locality in the interior of the country”. 

This is not the first time that a Cuban has died because of the late arrival of an ambulance. Several people have previously denounced that their relatives have died due to similar delays.

Just a few months ago, the news of a girl from Manzanillo, Granma, who died due to the delay of an ambulance went viral.

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