UN Chief Highlights Cuban Health Achievements

Havana, Jan 28 (Prensa Latina) UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon highlighted here today the achievements made by Cuba’s health system and the assistance and solidarity offered by Cuban doctors worldwide.

“You must feel happy to be trained in the most advanced school of Medicine in the world,” he said in a meeting with students of the Havana-based Latin American School of Medicine (ELAM).

“I ask you to learn and take this opportunity to study in Cuba and work with me and with the United Nations to make this world a healthier, stronger place, with no children starving or people dying from preventable diseases such as malaria,” said Ban Ki-moon.

In his visit to ELAM, accompanied by the Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Alicia Barcenas, Ban highlighted Cuban health results, including a low infant mortality rate, a higher life expectancy and a universal coverage, which he considered an example to many around the world.

He thanked Cuba and ELAM for their great contribution to South-South cooperation and solidarity worldwide.

He said he has visited many poor communities which have been victims of natural disasters and in many he has witnessed a common factor: the presence of Cuban doctors treating the population.

Ban and his entourage were received by Cuban Health Minister Roberto Morales and Rector of ELAM, Dr. Rafael Gonzalez.

The ElAm gives free training to youngsters from over 100 ethnic groups from poor families and remote areas in 123 countries.

At least 22,155 youngsters have graduated from ELAM, including 17,816 from Latin American and Caribbean countries.

Ban Ki-moon arrived to Havana yesterday. He was invited to attend the Second Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), in session here.


Modificado el ( martes, 28 de enero de 2014 )

Cancer Immunotherapy: the Most Significant 2013 Science Breakthrough

By Vivian Collazo Montano*

Havana (Prensa Latina) Immunotherapy for cancer treatment tops the list of the most important scientific breakthroughs of 2013, according to the journal Science.

“This year there was no mistaking the immense promise of cancer immunotherapy,” said Tim Appenzeller, chief news editor of the renowned publication.

So far, this strategy of harnessing the immune system to attack tumors works only for some cancers and a few patients, so experts advise not to overstate the immediate benefits.

However, many specialists are convinced to be seeing the birth of an important new paradigm for cancer treatment, Appenzeller said.

The notable publication also selected among major breakthroughs of the year, the mini-organs development in vitro. Such is the case of a tiny brain created by the equipment of Austrian Juergen Knoblich, from induced pluripotent stem cells (IPs). In addition, in the Center for Regenerative Medicine in Barcelona was built a human mini-kidney from a few skin cells.

In the list of Science are also included the cloning technique of somatic cell nuclear transfer, the same used to clone Dolly the sheep seventeen years ago, and vaccine design, a research highlighting the importance of microbes living in the body, discoveries in solar cell technologies, genomic editing techniques, as well as image generation techniques.

In 2012, the Higgs boson (the so-called God particle) was crowned by the journal Science, as the main discovery of the year.


Meanwhile, the renowned journal Nature selected the most prominent science figures of this culminating year.

Among them, Michel Mayor, a 71 years old astronomer who discovered the most Earth-like planet found so far. Mayor determined that Kepler-78b, located about 700 light years away in the constellation Cygnus, is the most similar world to ours, from all the worlds found until today.

Also is included Shoukhrat Mitalipov, who along with his colleagues at the Oregon Health & Science University, obtained stem cells from cloned human embryos for therapeutic purposes, and Feng Zhang, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, for developing a system to edit genomes in a cheaper, easier and more accurately manner.

Tania Simoncelli prevented human genes being patented, while scientific Deborah Persaud was acknowledged after providing the clearest evidence so far that babies born with HIV can be cured.

The journal also included the Russian researcher Victor Grokhousky, for his work on the meteorite that impacted against the city of Chelyabinsk on February 15, and calculation he made about its path; the virologist Hualan Chen, for his work in China on H7N9 avian influenza in humans; the anthropologist Kathryn Clancy, for denouncing the rise of sexual assault in her field, and Henry Snaith, physicist at the University of Oxford, for his research in solar energy.

Likewise, is included the Philippine delegate to the climate summit UN, Naderev Sano, who made an appeal for climate awareness and refused to eat until positive agreements were reached in meetings.

* Head of Science Editorial Department of Prensa Latina News Agency 


Modificado el ( jueves, 16 de enero de 2014 )


Latin America and Caribbean Strengthen Energy Complementarity

By Sinay Céspedes Moreno*

Montego Bay, Jamaica (PL) The 2nd Meeting of Ministers of Energy of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) held in Montego Bay, Jamaica, was an opportunity for consensus to strengthen the complementarity of the two sub-regions on energy issue.

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Cuba No. 1 in Density of Healthcare Workforce

Washington, Nov 12 (Prensa Latina) Cuba ranks first among countries with the greatest density of healthcare providers, reporting 135 doctors per 10,000 inhabitants, followed by the United States with 125, and Canada with 96, according to a 2013 Pan-American Health Organization report.

Haiti led the nations below the minimum standard with only 4 doctors per 10,000 inhabitants, followed by Guyana (11), Guatemala (13) and Bolivia (14), the report adds.

The report, titled A Universal Truth: No Health Without a Workforce, also analyzes challenges in distribution, migration and training of health professionals.

The report says that about 70 percent of countries in the Americas have sufficient, and in some cases more than enough, medical staff to provide basic health care services for their populations.

The problem is ensuring that everyone, especially people in vulnerable communities and remote areas, have access to well-trained, culturally sensitive and competent health staff, said Carissa F. Etienne, PAHO director.

“The best strategy for achieving this is to strengthen multidisciplinary professional teams at the primary health care level,” she added.

The report highlights that the number of health workers worldwide needs to grow by more than seven million. It also suggest a better geographical distribution, since in many countries, these providers are concentrated in big cities.



Latin America and Caribbean Strengthen Energy Complementarity

By Sinay Céspedes Moreno*

Imagen activaMontego Bay, Jamaica (PL) The 2nd Meeting of Ministers of Energy of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) held in Montego Bay, Jamaica, was an opportunity for consensus to strengthen the complementarity of the two sub-regions on energy issue.

Continue reading

Reading, Passport to Human Development

Havana, Oct 23 (Prensa Latina) Reading is the passport to human development, social, economic, it is freedom, agreed here today participants in the International Congress To Read the 21st Century.

Fabiano dos Santos, Brazilian professor and researcher, lectured on the act of reading as a practice of freedom, book policies and the formation of readers.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, he said, there are critical points in the literacy and knowledge indicators which could improve through the promotion of reading from early stages.

We learn to read in order to write our own history, he said rephrasing his fellowman Paulo Freire, distinguished pedagogue.

About the event he commented to Prensa Latina that it is a great Cuban contribution to the world in order to promote the reading habit as a need to cultivate intellect.

On her part, Brazilian editor Dolores Prades spoke about the seminars Conversations at the end of the page which she coordinates over the last three years in her country.

The Cuban event allows the opportunity to know what is being done over the world in favour of literature for children and youths, said Prades to Prensa Latina.

On Thursday the event proposes the conference The Sense of Reading by Argentinian Angela Pradelli and a dialogue about ageless books.

The Second International Colloquium on Books for Babies, Children and Youths will also take place to exchange ideas about the conception of books for those ages.


U.S. Blockade Conditions Cuban Educational Work

50 years conditions the educational work in Cuba, the director of the Central Institute of Educational Sciences, Lisardo Garcia, stated today.

Such aggressive policy impacts on the general management of teaching, limiting its possibilities, Garcia said at a news conference about the damages caused to the Cuban educational system from March 2012 to April this year.

It seems that there is no blockade in education because schools open every day, the academician stated after saying that Cuban children will have access to education although such Washington policy exists.

Only for the payment of freights in removals from distant markets of nearly 400 containers in 2012, the country had to pay more than $800,000 USD additional compared with the cost of having purchased these products in the southern region of the United States.

If such restrictions do not exist due to freight overpay, the country would have hired 1,723 of 6,000 modules needed for teaching natural sciences in elementary education, Garcia said.

Our objective is to decrease the effects of the blockade whatever the possibilities, the director of the Institute dependent on the Ministry of Education said.