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Cuba’s response

canel mesaThe President of the Republic of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, and Jorge Núñez Jover, dean of the University of Havana’s Science, Technology and Society department, have published an article entitled Gestión gubernamental y ciencia cubana en el enfrentamiento a la Covid-19 (Government management and Cuban science in confronting COVID-19) in the Cuban Academy of Sciences’ journal Anales.

The article represents a valuable contribution to the international community, immersed in the fight against SARS-COV-2, by sharing the experience gained in this effort, based on collaboration between Cuban scientists and the government.

The pandemic has made clear the failure of neoliberal policies, and the relevance of international cooperation and solidarity in meeting the challenges. In this struggle, Cuba has faced the enormous and additional challenge of the intensification of the U.S. blockade and slanderous campaigns to discredit our health professionals.

The country has, however, managed to control the epidemic and move to a favorable stage, based on the unity of our people in this battle for life; thanks to a universal health care system, free and accessible to 100% of the population; with renowned, highly qualified and world-renowned professionals, a coherent national plan of preventative measures, a strong biopharmaceutical industry, scientific development; and the humanist practice of our state with the understanding health as a right and not as a commodity.

Cuba offers its experience, aware that, as the article reflects, what has been achieved “has ethical and political meaning, as well.”


-Creation of the national task force, led by the President and the Prime Minister, which meets daily.

-Weekly meeting with experts and scientists to evaluate research results and their application.

-Activation of Provincial Defense Councils throughout the national territory.

-Daily press conferences to inform the population of updates and progress in implementing the COVID-19 Prevention and Control Plan.

-Daily television programs to provide updates on different topics related to the Prevention and Control Plan.

-Weekly work sessions with the Economic Advisory Group to address issues concerning the economic and social development strategy.

-Visits to research centers.

-Discussion of results of mathematical models, geo-location and geo-referencing studies by researchers at the University of Havana Mathematics and Geography departments.

-Analysis in all provincial Defense Councils of the epidemic’s evolution with mapping provided by geographers at the UH.

-Advisory Group conferences to prepare for monthly Council of Ministers meetings to address the epidemic’s impact, scenarios and the necessary productive transformation.

-Approval and current implementation of strategy designed for the post-COVID-19 recovery phase.

-Intense work currently underway on the conception of an economic and social strategy for the next stage of strengthening the economy, to confront a prolonged world crisis.


-Development of statistical information systems and website for standardization and visualization of information.

-Development of an application for mobile devices for active monitoring and epidemiological surveys of the population.

-Analysis of the disease’s propagation, distribution and risk of transmission by province, municipality and health area, and its relationship to risk factors.

-Predictions of the epidemic’s development including analysis of climatic factors, temperature and relative humidity.

-Internet-based modeling for monitoring of contacts of confirmed patients and evaluation of steps taken to control the epidemiological transmission chain.

-Evaluation of the impact of measures on the reduction of population mobility.

-Evaluation of the impact of biotechnology products on the reduction of severity and mortality among COVID-19 patients.

-Development of multilevel and artificial intelligence models to compare the behavior of the epidemic in Cuba with other countries in the region and the world.

-Population studies of carriers.

-Prediction of the end of the epidemic and post-epidemic behavior.

-Identification of statistical indicators to guide the de-escalation of measures

-Administration of Biomodulin-T to elderly residents of long-term care institutions.

-Clinical-epidemiological characterization of Cuban children and adolescents with COVID-19.

-Intervention programs in mental health and psychological support.


-January 7, 2020

Chinese scientists identify the causal agent, a new coronavirus, labeled SARS-COV-2, and the new disease the virus causes named COVID-19.

-January 29, 2020

Army General Raul Castro Ruz, first secretary of the Party’s Central Committee, indicates the need for a national strategy.

The Council of Ministers approves a Prevention and Control Plan to address the new coronavirus, which would later be amended and improved.

-January 30, 2020

WHO declares the current epidemic.

-February 3, 2020

The first stage of training begins for health professionals and workers within Central State Administration agencies on bio-security issues.

-February 12, 2020

The Science Group is created.

-February 17, 2020

The COVID-19 Health Observatory is established.

-February 26, 2020

The Innovation Committee is organized.

-February 28, 2020

The first five COVID-19 research projects were approved. By June 1, 460 research projects were underway.

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