Cuba, 12 million inhabitants shows its internationalism and solidarity with the peoples of the whole world, in the fight against covid19 by helping various countries, such as China, Italy, France, Andorra, Spain, Jamaica, Suriname, Grenada, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Vietnam…Cuba sent 508 doctors and nurses abroad; these medical staff who arrived in Lombardy on March 22 had participated in the fight against the Ebola virus in Africa in 2014 .
The various missions supported by Cuba around the world are currently continuing in the midst of a health crisis.
"In all, more than 25,000 Cuban doctors in thirty-three countries affected by covid-19 work under the guidance of local health authorities," said Pedro Luis Pedroso, Cuba’s ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva. He underlines that this cooperation "has not commercial, but humanitarian motives" ... "They are entirely or partially free for those who are in an unfavorable financial situation".
This humanist tradition dates from the first years of the Cuban revolution. In 1963, the first country to benefit from this cooperation was Algeria. Since then, more than 400,000 "soldiers in white coats" have served in 164 countries in Africa, America, the Middle East and Asia. In 2014, Cuba had already demonstrated its abnegation during the battle against Ebola in West Africa, with the dispatch of 256 of its doctors. In the 1980s, after the Chernobyl disaster, a record number of sick Ukrainian children were cared for and treated on the island.
If Cuba can thus "export" its doctors, it is because their skills are internationally recognized. The contribution of Cuban epidemiologists and virologists was particularly decisive in the fight against the cholera epidemic that occurred in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.
Cuban research teams are currently collaborating with China to develop a remedy for covid19, called "Interferon Alpha-2b Recombinant", which has been used in Cuba for several years in the treatment of other diseases. 113 countries are said to have already asked the Cuban authorities for this remedy. The World Health Organization (WHO) explained that the effectiveness of Interferon is currently being tested, like that of other drugs. At the same time, in Cuba, the search for a vaccine against covid-19 is currently occupying a large number of scientists in the country.
The Cuban health system is recognized worldwide for its excellence and efficiency despite extremely limited resources and the dramatic impact caused by economic sanctions imposed by the United States for more than half a century. Its population benefits from a free and universal national health system ... which has a total of 493,368 health workers and a ratio of 80.2 doctors, 15 dentists and 79.3 nurses per 10,000 residents.
The infant mortality rate of 4.2 per thousand reflects the quality of its system and the impact on the well-being of children and pregnant women. This infant mortality rate is even lower than that of the United States and is among the lowest in the world; life expectancy is 78 years, the highest in all Latin America.
The international assistance provided by Cuba today does not diminish the attention it must pay to its own people. Several hundred cases of people affected by covid19 were detected within a few weeks. Eight deaths are to be deplored for the moment, several thousand people are hospitalized. The first cases were imported by tourists.
The government has decided to close the country's borders. Tourism brought to Cuba more than $ 3 billion in profits in 2018. President Miguel Díaz-Canel also announced the closure of schools for a month.
The findings of world organizations on Cuba are concordant. Cuba is:
* "A model" according to the World Health Organization
* For the UN, "the health system in Cuba is an example for all countries in the world".
* WHO, in 2017, awarded Cuba the Public Health Prize for its work in the fight against Ebola, the most important distinction granted by the institution.
* According to Margaret Chan, Director General of the World Health Organization until 2017: “Cuba has based its health system on preventive medicine and its results are exceptional”… she underlines that the world must follow the example of the island in this area ... "We fervently hope that all the inhabitants of the planet can have access to quality medical services, as in Cuba".
* The United Nations stresses that: "Saving lives: this is what Cuba does in the world", and adds that the island "has a long history of cooperation" with the countries of the Third World.
* According to the United Nations: "ELAM is the most advanced medical school in the world." In 2019, Cuba trained more than 35,000 health workers from 136 nations around the world in its various universities.
But then, they cannot be satisfied with declarations. They must act against US sanctions!
Cubans can study medicine for free and benefit from a rate of doctors per capita that we can envy, but do not always have access to the most basic medicines because of the American sanctions.
Trump is murdering the people of Cuba, with an escalation in economic sanctions. They cause serious shortages for the population and also deprive millions of people around the world of the only access to health they had, thus putting their lives at risk.
Cuba remains a major obstacle in the policy of imperialist domination of the region and they will stop at nothing to get rid of the Cuban revolution.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the former president of Chile Michelle Bachelet, has just asked for a relaxation of the restrictions and sanctions in force against Cuba. We must go further.
The end of restrictions and sanctions against Cuba must be demanded. The French government must intervene. It is urgent today to allow the Island to devote itself to developing treatments against the disease.
"The challenge posed by the Coronavirus requires the support of all humanity, without distinction," said the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba.
More than ever therefore, solidarity with Cuba is an internationalist duty. In the name of the Revolutionary Party COMMUNISTES we express our total support to the Cuban Communist Party, to the Cuban people, to its social organizations in the fight they are waging today against coronavirus.