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Similar but different: Health and economic crisis in 1990s Cuba and Russia


  • Borowy, Iris


The collapse of the Soviet Bloc caused devastating economic crises in Cuba and in the Russian Federation but triggered remarkably different public health responses: while mortality rates in Russia increased substantially the crisis was barely visible in Cuban public health statistics. Fundamental social, political and cultural differences in the two countries and the respective specificities of the crisis in either country seem responsible, including different long-term health trajectories and different traditions of health-related agenda setting. Cuban policies combined traditional top down activism with grass root activities, strengthening social capital, while the "shock therapy" adopted in Russia had a corrosive effect on society, increasing psycho-social pressure and weakening support.

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  • Borowy, Iris, 2011. "Similar but different: Health and economic crisis in 1990s Cuba and Russia," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 72(9), pages 1489-1498, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:72:y:2011:i:9:p:1489-1498

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Briggs, Charles L., 2011. "“All Cubans are doctors!” news coverage of health and bioexceptionalism in Cuba," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 1037-1044.


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