Brasilia, Dec 3 (Prensa Latina) Former President Dilma Rousseff affirmed that Brazil has confirmed the solidarity, fraternity, and competence of Cuban professionals in the More Doctors program, the most important health program in the past 20 years.
This initiative ‘was the most important for the basic health care of the Brazilian people in the last 20 years. The World Health Organization (WHO) considers it as the first and most fundamental,’ Rousseff told Prensa Latina at a meeting of the national leadership of the Workers’ Party (PT).
She acknowledged that her country has an ‘immense lack of doctors … and Cuba has a solid health system and an immense teaching practice based on public health, in the prevention of ailments and treatment of people in staging posts in the communities.’
She explained that the More Doctors program emerged when we discovered that Brazil had ’63 million people without medical attention and we did a contest first for the Brazilian doctors to participate, but few showed up and then we decided to complete the vacancies, and we opened the posts for doctors from other nationalities.’
When there were problems in Haiti due to an earthquake and cholera, and Ebola hit badly African nations, we realized that those who were able to treat systematically and massively were Cuban doctors, the former president commented.
She added that, in the face of such health situation in Brazil, ‘we turned to Cuba and signed an agreement through PAHO (Pan American Health Organization), linked to WHO, and we received the friendship, fraternity, and competence from Cuban doctors.’
The Cuban professionals, Rousseff continued, ‘came to Brazil and in an very generous and progressive way they reached the 11,000 when I was president and later I was the target of a coup d’etat in 2016.’
Cuban doctors had a positive attitude; they treated Brazilians kindly; they were not distant professionals who only prescribed medications. They made their history and diagnosis, visited houses, had a close relationship of selfless help. That made the difference, the political leader recalled.
She stressed that the difference was so great that when an investigation was made, ‘the Brazilian people voted for Cuban doctors and had an approval of almost one hundred percent, more or less between 94 and 95 percent.’
And that was progressive and we did several interviews and we realized how the Brazilians saw the doctors. Everyone loved the Cubans. Two elements came to light: first, the prefects of the different municipalities wanted Cuban doctors, the sick ones wanted Cuban doctors, the former head of state stressed.
In addition, she said, a second issue is that the pattern of medicine in Cuba is internationally recognized by WHO and PAHO. When you have a serious public health problem you resort to Cuban doctors, to Cuban medicine, so Cuban professionals did not have to validate their certificate to join the More Doctors program.
It was a great effort for Cuba to send 11,000 doctors and in the Government of Michel Temer there was a reduction in the number of Cubans (more than 8,300) and that was serious, because previously there was a deficit and that compromised the health of the Brazilian people.
Finally, Rousseff denounced that currently ‘there is a major problem due to the absolutely radical, ideological and offensive positions against a country that helped Brazil.’ It is very understandable why Cuba withdrew from the More Doctors program, she admitted.
The future administration of Jair Bolsonaro ‘is deceiving the population by saying that Brazilian doctors will occupy the vacancies left by the Cubans, the former president warned.
She predicted that ‘there will be a big problem for public health and it will be the responsibility of a government is not yet in office.’