Fidel Castro: Doctors are a fabulous need in the world (+ Photos)Publicado: abril 24, 2020
By Lázaro David Najarro Pujol
The historical leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, from an early date such as December 9, 1981, highlighted the potential of the largest of the Antilles to be at the forefront of medicine in the world and to convert to the island in a universal power.
It happened at the closing of the V Congress of the Union of Health Workers, held in the Main Theater of Camagüey, when the Commander-in-Chief shared the objectives with the delegates, guests and all the Cuban people: «I think that if we are making a Great effort to create universities and create the material base, we must pay special attention to the quality with which our doctors are being trained.
I think that we should be in a very open spirit and have very fresh information on all the problems of Medicine in the world, make contacts with all those countries that are more advanced in this or another branch of Medicine. ”
Fidel considered that to be at the forefront of the world in medicine, it was necessary to dedicate “research efforts to all those things that are not investigated.
But I think that if we want to achieve something like what we are proposing, to have a very open spirit, very up-to-date information and many contacts with all areas and points, wherever they are, that they will be at the forefront of any field of science and science. medical technique ».
On that occasion, Fidel highlighted the performance of the Camaguey scientist Carlos J. Finlay, whom he described as an extraordinary figure. Finlay was nominated seven times for the Nobel Prize, but was never awarded.
He has the merit of having discovered the transmitting agent of yellow fever, however, the Institute of Tropical Medicine, directed by Ronald Ross in Liverpool, England, awarded him the Mary Kingsle Medal. The Cuban statesman emphasized the most dramatic problems in the field of health in the underdeveloped world, referring to the situation of specialized personnel.
“A large part of the population in these countries does not receive any health service, much less has access to qualified personnel for their care.” He illustrated that “the average number of doctors per inhabitant in less developed countries was then one per 17,000, which reaches one doctor per 2,700 people in more developed countries, and averages one doctor per 520 inhabitants in developed countries.
Also, while there is a nurse for 6,500 people in the poorest countries, the figure reaches one nurse for 220 inhabitants in developed countries.
Fidel Castro reasoned then, that infectious-contagious diseases in Cuba were registering a notable decrease “as control programs and the development of services in general have been improving”.
The historical leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, promoted a health system on the universal island that in 1981 was already compared to that of developed countries. “And there is no doubt that this constitutes an achievement, a great achievement of the Revolution and the health workers.”
In addition, he stressed that Cuban public health occupied in 1981 “a prioritized and sacred place of the Revolution. We sincerely believe that this is one of his most important tasks. ”
As Cuban public health currently constituted a blocking point for the United States government «And the enemy tried to hit us precisely in this field.
And he hit us sensitively, when he snatched half of us away; that is, 3,000 doctors, out of the 6,000 that were at the triumph of the Revolution; They left us 3,000.
It was a hard day; a blow that forced us, of course, to react, to pay special attention to the training of doctors, to the development of our medical schools, in order to be able to respond “. The preamble in Cuba to the confrontation with Covid-19 that affects humanity was constituted by the dengue epidemic.
“As you know, at one point it reached a level, in one day, of 11,700 cases.
This epidemic appeared in a strange way, at the end of May, around Rancho Boyeros, and by mid-June, it was practically all over the country, “said Fidel. He added that “the date, the deadline was July 6, which reached the aforementioned figure, this epidemic was of great magnitude; As you know, it cost the lives of 101 children and 57 adults. How many lives would this epidemic have cost under other conditions!
I will surely have to been numbered by thousands, if not for the effort of health workers, and the medical resources that the country has today. It must be said that our doctors, nurses, technicians, service workers have saved the lives of thousands of children this year of 1981 ».
Fidel wondered: «Could this disease have been stopped in other conditions, without spreading to millions of people? Such an epidemic in other circumstances would have been truly unstoppable.
Fidel Castro, urged “to promote medical services in our country at all costs and to advance our science and our medical technique.
I do not believe that the Revolution can have a more human task than that, nor something more important for our people, despite these achievements, these already achieved successes, which are unquestionable. ”
The Commander-in-Chief attached vital importance to the training of doctors and other health personnel: “Some may wonder if there will be a surplus of doctors. About this, what do we think?
I think that the doctors are never going to be left over, and the health personnel are never going to be left over; Because we have thousands of schools, one day it may be considered convenient to have one doctor per school. If you have a school of 500 students, it is better to have a doctor there; you can have one per factory, one per ship ».
But Fidel thought not only of Cuba but of humanity: «If we are a little more judicious, a little more sensible and a little more forward-looking, we would begin to see the question from another angle: doctors are a fabulous need in the world.
When we think about the needs of Latin America, Asia, Africa, the underdeveloped world, it takes millions of doctors, millions, and those doctors are not being trained anywhere, to tell the truth. We, in medical collaboration with some countries, have even promoted medical schools. ”
The American philosopher and linguist Noam Chomsky recently stated that “the only country that has demonstrated genuine internationalism has been Cuba.”
The effort made by Cuba throughout the Revolution, is currently palpable, in the confrontation with Covid-19 that affects more than 98 percent of the countries of the world with 2 million 355 thousand 853 confirmed cases and 164 thousand 659 deaths , for a lethality of 6.9%. (Author’s photos).(Translated by Linet Acuña Quilez)