The staff of the International Centre for Neurological Restoration (CIREN) is looking for options in the midst of the cruel US blockade to continue providing a service of excellence with programmes that are unique of their kind in the world.

This genocidal policy, intensified in recent years with 243 more measures, maintained by successive US governments against Cuba for more than six decades, has made the scientists of this institution, founded by Commander-in-Chief Fidel Castro 33 years ago, more competent.

In an exclusive conversation with the Cuban News Agency, Dr. Héctor Vera Cuesta, director general of CIREN, said: “we have lived through the blockade and we have suffered from it here with a lack of resources, but it has made us more intelligent, more sensitive, more humane, and more internationally recognised as a people of resistance”.

With certain companies, it has been difficult to find technological consumables that they cannot sell because they risk facing lawsuits, said the neurology specialist.

“Every day we suffer this genocidal policy since our foreign patients have sought alternative flights, or when it comes to paying they have had to do so by transfer with certain banks, and they are also hindered from using their cards here because of all the financial persecution,” remarked the general director of the centre.

For more than six decades, Cuba has faced the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the US government, the most unjust, severe and prolonged system of sanctions ever applied against any country, which has a high impact on the health of the Cuban population.

An example of this is that the country is denied the right to acquire the technologies, raw materials, reagents, diagnostics, medicines, devices, equipment and spare parts necessary for the better functioning of its National Health System, which have to be obtained in more distant markets or through a third country, with an increase in costs.

Another negative impact of this siege on health care is that technologies of US origin or with more than 10 percent of components from the United States cannot be acquired by the largest of the Antilles, said the expert.

“We are doctors who don’t get tired, we don’t look for excuses, we try to find solutions to problems,” emphasised the director of this institution, which enjoys recognised prestige around the world.

Through programmes that have arisen in this clinic, more than 12,000 patients from 98 countries on five continents have been treated since its opening, he said.

In addition to the service area, consisting of five large clinics, CIREN has a research centre where research is generated that contributes to the development of medical care.

Fidel’s great founding ideas are the ones we have been defending for the past 33 years and we will continue along these lines, adapting and rethinking ourselves in the new circumstances and current times, but without ever losing the thoughts of the Commander in Chief, in what was also his work, concluded the director of CIREN.