Cubans use bitcoin to alleviate health crisis amid protests

The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a global health crisis without warning. Cuba does not escape the contagion or death of this disease that compromises the respiratory system. However, on the island an initiative is using bitcoin (BTC) as an alternative to face the disease.

A group of Cubans is processing national and foreign donations with cryptocurrencies to alleviate the situation and attend to the growing number of patients. So far more than $ 2,000 has already been raised, which has served to buy medicines, medical supplies and food.

Donations with bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are used for the purchase of masks, medical supplies and food. Source: Mr. Liuhuabing /

The articles are distributed in different areas of the country, but especially among Cubans living in Matanzas, one of the provinces most affected by COVID-19 cases. Local businesswoman Thais Liset formed a working group with which she hopes to help as many people as possible, said Coindesk.

Through her Twitter account, the entrepreneur clarify that the goal is to help those affected and prevent new infections. Liset’s message is aimed at dismiss any link of the initiative with the protests that have occurred recently in Cuba or with some personal interest.

“Let’s see people, make some things clear: this action has no other interest than to help. Everything bought is in my thread fixed. We keep an impeccable count of expenses to publish after we finish. I have no economic need,” Liset explained on the popular social network.

The mechanism of raising funds using bitcoin is also related to the restrictions that Cubans have on exchange. In addition, it should be mentioned that, due to the sanctions and the economic embargo of the United States, Cubans have adopted other alternatives to have access to the financial world.

Sending donations with bitcoin and cryptocurrencies

On how is the process for sending donations with Bitcoin, the bitcoin cuban Erich García Cruz reported that one of the options is through the QvaPay service, a payment gateway for merchants that supports multiple cryptocurrencies, including: BTC, LTC, ETH, BCH and XMR.

The sending of funds comes from both Cubans inside the island and those living abroad. After digital assets are received, they are exchanged on the black market to foreign currency to buy in local stores that process payments with other national currencies.

According to García Cruz, the exchange rate in the parallel market is 60 Cuban pesos to the dollar, while in the case of cryptocurrencies the rate for exchanges is about 50 pesos.

Another alternative for sending donations with bitcoin is the one enabled by the company Slyk. According to its CEO, Tim Parsa, the platform can be used in Cuba by people who want to collect donations with any payment method, from Venmo to bitcoin.

Crypto News has reported in the past that bitcoin is gaining interest in Cuba since 2015. In fact, an article shows what are the options when it comes to selling or buying BTC from the Caribbean island.

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