The visit of the Prime Minister of Timor-Leste, Rui Maria de Araujo, to the Victoria de Girón Institute of Basic and Preclinical Sciences
For a country that has managed to train more than 800 physicians in over a decade, thanks to the Cuban medical collaboration, and expects to reach a thousand in the next two or three years, the ten young Timorese that waited for the Prime Minister are another proof of "excellent Cuban collaboration", defined the visitor. Photo: Calixto N. LlanesZoom
A group of young people received the Prime Minister of Timor-Leste, Rui Maria de Araujo, upon arrival at the centre governing the curriculum of the University of Medical Sciences, when he arrived accompanied by the Cuban Minister of Health, Roberto Morales Ojeda, and the rector of the institution, Jorge Gonzalez Perez.
Later, Dr. Gonzalez Perez proudly presented the ten young men, in their white coats, waiting in line at the entrance to the room where they would then hold an exchange with the Prime Minister. "These are yours," said the Cuban Chancellor, and Rui Maria de Araujo greeted each one.
For a country that has managed to train more than 800 physicians in over a decade, thanks to the Cuban medical collaboration, and expects to reach a thousand in the next two or three years, the ten young Timorese that waited for the Prime Minister are another proof of "excellent Cuban collaboration", defined the visitor.
"Cuban education is integral, not only for the scientific base, but for ethical and humanistic principles. Ever since the independence of Timor-Leste, the Government has opted for the training of future Timorese doctors on the basis of the principles and curriculum of the medical training in Cuba," said the distinguished visitor, who said that if Timor-Leste has reduced infant mortality and is among the countries that have met the Millennium Development Goal it is due to the contribution of Cuba.
"Since we started this collaboration in 2004 over a thousand medical collaborators have passed through Timor-Leste and this has made a big difference in the health of the population", he said.
He also announced that his country has founded a medical school, where most teachers are Cuban, and in time the Timorese will handle the responsibility of training their own doctors and from other Asia-Pacific countries, a project designed for medium and long term.
The Prime Minister mentioned the important support of Cuba in Timorese literacy, as well as collaboration in sport, agriculture and culture.
"The Literacy campaign, launched in 2007, has managed to teach in a period of five years 190,000 Timorese to read and write, representing 10 to 15 percent of the population," he said.
"I want to take this opportunity to thank, on behalf of my Government, Commander Fidel Castro for having started this whole collaboration in 2003, and thank His Excellency Raul Castro for giving continuity to all that we started, and thank the brotherly people of Cuba for their generosity and solidarity, especially to those who left Cuba to travel to the antipodes and be with us in Timor-Leste to help us with our development process, "said the Prime Minister.
In the exchange, both with the Cuban Minister of Health and with the Rector of the University of Medical Sciences, the Timorese leader received a detailed explanation of how the massive training of doctors is designed, based on a new concept for the students to leave well prepared and ready for primary health care: assessing the lifestyles and risk factors of populations and to diagnose, treat and rehabilitate before any disease.
Rui Maria de Araujo asked his counterpart and received details. He was seen to nod when Dr. Gonzalez said, "If our doctors were not good, the people would not want them; They are technically and humanely good." His opening words confirmed that certainty.
Translated by ESTI