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Haiti - Health : Fidel Castro, 12 years of Cuban cooperation
28/12/2010 10:12:38

Haiti - Health : Fidel Castro, 12 years of Cuban cooperation
Fidel Castro, the leader of the Cuban Revolution, during one of his thoughts to the press, has traced the history of medical cooperation between Cuba and Haiti.

He recalled that in the late 90s, after the end of the dictatorship of Duvalier and the Tonton Macoutes "imposed for decades by the United States" and the establishment of a government elected by the people of Haiti, Cuba sent 100 doctors practicing in this country [December 4, 1998]. The first contingent of young Haitian graduates from high school, was sent to Cuba to begin their medical studies in 1999.

"In 2001, we initiated a collaboration with the Medical University founded by President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, and we sent teachers who also worked as physician to serve the people of Haiti. When the Yankees staged a coup, the medical school was turned into barracks. Approximately 270 students and their professors are returned to Cuba continued their studies"

During this period, recalls the revolutionary leader, "the Cuban medical mission has continued to offer its humanitarian services in Haiti, despite the internal political problems of the country under the occupation of puschistes, Yankee troops or forces of Minustah".

In August 2005, the first 128 Haitian students of sixth-grade medicine, have returned at home to practice alongside the Cuban doctors and serve Haiti .

Since the second half of 2006 until the second half of 2010, 625 young Haitian doctors graduated in Cuba. Among them, 240 work in medical institutions of the Government of Haiti, 125 are now engaged in the fight against cholera, in Cholera Treatment Centres (CTC) or in communities in collaboration with Cuban doctors and graduates of the Latin American School of Medicine in Havana (ELAM). 72, working in NGOs medical centers, 20 in "joint centers" and 41 are studying for a second medical specialty in Cuba. 14 students graduate not practicing medicine because of personal problems, pregnancy and maternity, 4 others for unknown reasons and 1 died.

109 doctors are now working abroad, mainly in Spain, the United States, Canada and France, 1 in Switzerland and 4 in Latin America. Fidel Castro wished to clarify that "it would be wrong to judge the choice of the young Haitian doctors, because their country is very poor and that it lack of resources and jobs, and none refused to serve his country". But as pointed out the Cuban revolutionary leader, "the doctors trained in Cuba are very popular".

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