The magazine you hold in your hands was printed while wonderful news was sweeping across our beautiful island. Abdala, one of the five vaccine candidates developed in Cuba’s laboratory network, was approved for emergency use by the Center for State Control of Medicines, Equipment and Medical Devices (CECMED) with an efficacy of 92.28 percent in preventing COVID-19 infection after three doses. This places it among the top in the world and is a triumph for the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB).
This was followed by the news that another vaccine candidate, SOBERANA 02, from the Finlay Vaccine Institute, achieved 91.2 percent efficacy after the third dose of the SOBERANA PLUS booster was applied.
Such achievements show once again that Cuba is a Latin American leader in biotechnology and is prepared to play its part in protecting the world. Most importantly though, the news is a wonderful boost for the Cuban people.
It feels right, then, that CubaPLUS Magazine is celebrating the extraordinarily varied gifts of nature of this, the largest Antillean Island. We look at the range of bird life, celebrated through the world, and report on the country’s commendable work to protect its environment by replanting corals.
We celebrate the culture, ready to burst out in all its vibrancy just as soon as the vaccines do their work. We meet painter and writer Ileana Mulet, listen to Abdel Rasalps Sotolongo - Lele - singer in the fabled salsa band Los Van Van, gaze at the work of photographer Humberto Mayol, and walk a mile in the shoes of footwear brands Bymara and Marajai.
But this moment really belongs to Cuba’s scientists, so we report on the work of Comercializadora de Servicios Médicos S.A. (CSMC S.A.) and their promotion of medical tourism. This includes the regenerative stem cell medical treatments carried out by the Institute of Hematology and Immunology, and the therapies of La Pradera International Health Center for the recovery of patients directly or indirectly affected by the coronavirus.
Cuba will recover fast from the pandemic, moving forward almost as fast as cyclist Arlenis Sierra. She tells us the story of how she won a place in the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics, due to take place this summer. We finish though, like all good Cuban meals, with a recipe for flan.
Visit www.cubaplusmagazine.com to stay up to date with the latest news. And we remind all our readers that, effective though the vaccines are, they need time to work. Keep following the advice and together we’ll stop the spread.