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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 infections or deaths caused by this disease that compromises the respiratory system. However, on the island an initiative is using bitcoin (BTC) as an alternative to face the condition.

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

Donations with bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are used to purchase masks, medical supplies and food. Source: Thais Liset / twitter.com

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

Through her Twitter account, the entrepreneur clarified that the goal is to help the affected people and avoid new infections. Liset’s message is aimed at rule out any link between the initiative and the protests that have happened recently in Cuba or with some personal interest.

«Let’s see people, make some things clear: this action has no other interest than helping. Everything purchased is in my pinned thread. We keep an impeccable tally of expenses to post after we finish. I have no financial need, “explained Liset on the popular social network.

The mechanism of raising funds using bitcoin is also related to the restrictions that Cubans have on foreign 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 access the financial world.

Sending donations with bitcoin and cryptocurrencies

On how is the process for sending donations with Bitcoin, the Cuban bitcoiner 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 on the island and those who live abroad. After the 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 per dollar, while in the case of cryptocurrencies the exchange rate 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.

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

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