HAVANA TIMES, Feb. 23 — While the massive Cuban medical aid to Haiti —both before and after the January 12th earthquake— is continuously a topic in the Cuban media, in most of the international press it is a buried story.
However, one group, Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba (MEDICC), a non-profit organization based in the US, is keeping tabs on the Cuban assistance and raising support for the effort.
The MEDICC webpage recently ran an article on multi-national reinforcements traveling to Haiti to join the 736 Cuban doctors and technicians, 402 young Haitian doctors who studied medicine on scholarships in Cuba, as well as seven doctors from US and two from Nicaragua that also studied in Cuba.
The group also has extensive photos of the Cubans and other internationalists providing assistance in Haiti.
MEDICC quotes Gabriel Jacques, a 1st-year Haitian medical student at the Havana-based Latin American Medical School (ELAM), as telling the departing graduates of his school that “even in the hell that my country has become, you will find people like you who believe in the future, and who are willing to dream and rebuild.”
One of the departing physicians noted: “This isn’t an adventure. This is a commitment,” said Dr Wilberth Barral, a Bolivian ELAM graduate preparing to depart for Haiti. “My classmates are Haitian. Some lost their whole families, fathers, siblings, their homes. They need our help.”