Articles  |   July 2016
Acute Pain Workshop 2016
Article Information
Pain Medicine / Articles
Articles   |   July 2016
Acute Pain Workshop 2016
ASA Monitor 07 2016, Vol.80, 34-35.
ASA Monitor 07 2016, Vol.80, 34-35.
The introduction of anesthesia to Cuba was officially reported with the successful use of inhaled ether on March 11, 1947, in the capital city, La Habana, by the Cuban doctor Vicente Antonio De Castro y Bermúdez.1  Even earlier, work by Pio Manual Martínez Curbelo in 1937 demonstrated a novel approach to regional anesthesia in blocking the brachial plexus in the sitting position, in order to have better access to the plexus with less of a chance of puncturing the lung.2  In 1947, he later published work describing the use of a catheter for a continuous epidural block.
Cuban medicine has advanced considerably over the past few decades and has been recognized for work in neurosciences, oncology, cardiology, tropical medicine, disaster medicine, immunology, epidemiology and infectious diseases. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), in their State of the World Population Statistics 2006, report that Cuba was the first country to eradicate polio in 1962, the first country to eliminate measles in 1996, has the lowest AIDS rate in the Americas, and has the highest rate of treatment and control of hypertension in the world.3  With a country of 11,224,190 people, the 2014 Annual Health Statistics Report chronicles 85,463 physicians (76 per 10,000 pop), 152 hospitals and 451 clinics with 45,462 total hospital beds, and greater than 99 percent free coverage by primary care physicians.4 
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