#Opinion

A Pediatrician in The Gambia who fights and defeats death

Jul 9, 2020, 2:54 PM | Article By: By: MSc. María Inés Álvarez Garay (*)

Cuba, despite the prolonged and cruel blockade that the United States still imposes on it, it will never stop providing health care to those who need it, nor will the peoples who receive it allow any other devil in the service of Washington to try to stain the prestigious medicine of our beautiful island ..

The story for the definitive liberation of the country had in Fidel an indisputable leader, of high human sensitivity, always occupied by social justice and the welfare of the people. His concern for health and internationalist thought were present in his ideals before the Moncada and were part of his program of struggle, as shown in the following excerpt from his argument "History will absolve me":

"... to the ten thousand young professionals: doctors, ... dentists, pharmacists, ..., who leave the classrooms with their titles eager to fight and full of hope to find themselves in a dead end, all doors closed, deaf to the clamor and the plea ... Society remains criminally indifferent to the mass murder that is committed with thousands of children who die every year due to lack of resources; whose eyes seem to look towards the infinite as if asking for forgiveness for human selfishness and that it does not fall on men the curse of God ... It is declared that Cuban policy in America would be in close solidarity with the democratic peoples of the continent ... "

And not only in America, but Cuba's  kindness and altruism in has reached almost everyone.

The Cuban Medical Brigade in The Gambia has sown seeds of love that germinate day by day in each smile and in each happy face brought back to life.

We save lives, how many children today play in the streets, innocent, happy, how many today go to school and cover everything in their path full of health and vitality, thanks to the constant and dedicated work of these Cubans, such as Dr. Minerva Reina Pérez,  First Degree specialist in Pediatrics, Instructor and Master in Public Nutrition, who works in the Farafenni region, and in these times of pandemic she has not stopped a day of caring for her patients with great dedication.

We want to highlight two of her latest cases, which deserve recognition, the first 10-year-old patient with a history of vomiting and fever, three days before admission, the girl had been admitted two days in a Health Center with loss of consciousness, and was  discharge in 24 hours, in the same condition, the family  took her to the traditional medicine of this country, unsolved the situation they returned  to the hospital because the girl was still  unconscious.

It is at this time when she reaches the hands of this Cuban doctor, on physical examination she found that the patient was in a coma, herpetic lesions on the lips and left cheek, positive Babinsky, among other pathologies, no lumbar puncture could be performed, meningoencephalitis due to herpes was suspected and treatment is given.

The girl remained in a coma for 5 days, and after 6 days she began to have leg movements, then opened her eyes, until she gradually recovered completely and is discharged walking perfectly.

The girl has remained in interconsultations and her state of health is very favorable now.

The other case is about  two twins Awa and Adama, born at 36 weeks, weighing 1.1 kg and 1.09 kg, presented episodes of hypoglycemia, respiratory distress, in Awa an acyanotic heart disease was suspected, she was immediately referred to the Edward National Hospital Francis in Banjul, capital of The Gambia, where an echocardiogram was performed and an AV septum defect was diagnosed, she was discharged with satisfactory evolution.

Two months later, Awa returned to the hospital with an episode of diarrhea, dehydration, bloating, was treated immediately and was discharged in perfect health after 7 days.

The grateful mother writes the following: "I am the mother of Awa and Adama, I am sincerely thanking you for your efforts and attentions, that my almighty god, protect you from all evil and give you a long life and much health ,,, "

Congratulations Dr. Reina, women like you deserve all our respect and admiration, for your beautiful and valuable work.

These are the messages of thanks that our Cuban doctors receive daily.

Millions of people on this planet earth are clamoring to always be close to a Cuban health professional,  those who recognize their altruism.

Eusebio Leal in his prologue to the book "Children of misfortune: memories of the Cuban medical mission in Pakistan", said: "With his chivalrous sense of life and with a vision that reaches the future time, Fidel encouraged doctors to finalize their preparation to attend any other country on earth. "

If someone tries to dishonor the most invincible of armies, that of "White gowns of Cuba", they are wrong, because they are the most noble and humane of the world, and it is precisely impregnable because its sole purpose is to fight and defeat death.

(*) Professor and collaborator of the Cuban Medical Brigade in The Gambia