Cuban journalist arrives in the US with end-stage renal failure after a long journey

The young journalist is hospitalized in a clinic in San Diego, California.

Héctor González © Facebook/Mónica Baró
Hector Gonzalez Photo © Facebook/Mónica Baró

Cuban journalist Héctor González, suffering from kidney failure since 2018, managed to reach the United States on December 4, after almost a month of migratory journey from the island.

Her colleague and friend Mónica Baró explained inFacebook that in the midst of his critical medical situation, with a terminal illness, an infection, and facing difficulties in obtaining a humanitarian visa that would allow him to travel legally, González made the difficult decision to embark on a migratory journey to the United States to receive treatment. .

In Cuba – due to the shortage of supplies and conditions in the hospitals for these treatments – I no longer had hope or possibility of receiving the treatment.medical assistance what he needs, stressed Baró, who on several occasions requested catheters, blood donations and funds through social networks to help the communicator.

The journalist, 39 years old, made the journey with a catheter in his heart, the 24th that has been placed in him to perform dialysis, he stated.

"He had to undergo dialysis in different clinics that he found along the way and draw strength from the depths of his soul to move forward," said Baró.

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He adds that since he did not have time to wait for an appointment through the CBP One application, the migrant arrived at the border in San Diego, California, and surrendered on his knees before the authorities. He was immediately transferred to a detention center and then to a hospital in that city.

At midnight, December 3 to 4, he entered the country with serious health problems, shortness of breath and still infected. After being taken to a detention center and examined by a doctor, he was transferred to San Diego Regional Medical Center on December 4, where he is currently hospitalized. He is receiving treatment with antibiotics and is being evaluated by doctors, even considering the possibility of changing the catheter, Baró explained.

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Although he was released with an i220A (Parole) and was assigned a court date of 2027, the young man's current priority is to receive medical attention and save his life, said the independent journalist, who has been promoting several campaigns to help his colleague, including a campaign on the GoFundMe platform, where he managed to raise11 thousand dollars.

In this regard, he said that the funds raised in that campaign were used almost entirely to cover the expenses of the journey and dialysis in the different clinics during the tour.

He points out that González arrived with the clothes he was wearing and his coat torn after jumping over a barbed wire wall; Therefore, it will continue to need support from the Cuban community in the United States.

In June, González asked for help to obtain a humanitarian visa that would allow him to travel to the United States and access specialized treatment. Although she found a doctor interested in her case, she was unable to find a sponsor for her visa.

The journalist needs to undergo a peritoneal dialysis (PD) program, but the supplies in Cuba are insufficient to incorporate new patients. "Of about 4,000 kidney patients, only 80 have access to this treatment" in the country, which has been suffering a deep crisis in its health system for years, he explained.

González added that "there is also the option of kidney transplant, but they are not being performed either due to lack of supplies."

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