David Oliveira de Souza, a doctor and professor from the Research Institute of the Sirio-Libanés Hospital, sent an open letter to the more than four hundred Cuban doctors who recently arrived in Brazil and who constitute the first group of a total of 4,000 physicians who are expected to come to this country before December of this year.

Maternal home in Cuba. (Foto: Randy Rodríguez Pagés)

Maternal home in Cuba. (Foto: Randy Rodríguez Pagés)

The missive, published by the daily Folha from Sao Paulo, states:

Welcome, Cuban doctors. You will be very important for Brazil. The lack of doctors in remote and outlying areas have left our people in a difficult situation. Do not worry about hostility from some of our colleagues. You will be compensated greatly by the warm welcome in the communities for which you will care from this point on.

According to Oliveira de Souza, in states like Sergipe, it is easy to move from the capital to the Interior, but even so there are hundreds of unused job positions, even in equipped health units and in good conditions.

Before the deficit of 14,500 physicians in the South American nation, the government of Dilma Rousseff approved the “Mais Medicos” (More Doctors) program, which will contract doctors from Spain, Portugal, and Cuba, among other nations.

Recently, one of the principle critiques on the contracting of Cubans states that ”they were being exploited.” In the face of this argument, Oliveira de Souza says in his letter:

It was talked about as if they would work like slaves. The Panamerican Health Organization (PHO), with a century of experience, would be an accomplice, since it signed the cooperation agreement with the government of Brazil. Their smiling faces in the airports condemn those hypotheses. In the name of our village and the majority of our doctors, I can only say with conviction: a brotherly hug and thank you very much.