Experience the Trip of a Lifetime!

A People-to-People educational exchange organized by the health equity non-profit MEDICC
(Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba) in collaboration with
the Academy of Women’s Health and the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine
February 26 – March 5, 2017

*This is a members-only opportunity
Not a member? Join now!

The Academy of Women’s Health is once again offering a unique, educational exchange to Cuba organized by Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba (MEDICC).

Get an insider’s view of one of the world’s best kept secrets – the Cuban health care system – with a special focus on women’s health. Despite scarce resources, Cuba has attained excellent health outcomes and provides the powerful example that wealth does not equal health. Cuba’s national maternal-child health program has been exceptionally successful in prioritizing the health of women and children for more than 50 years. This is your unique opportunity to see it up close.

To provide this educational exchange, the Academy of Women’s Health is partnering with MEDICC, a non-profit offering 15 years’ experience in tailoring professional programs in Cuba to specific interests. MEDICC is the publisher of the peer-reviewed journal on Cuban health and medicine, MEDICC Review, and is the only U.S. organization specializing in Cuban health care.

Cuba Eliminates Mother to Child Transmission of HIV and Syphilis

Underscoring the impact of Cuba’s healthcare system is Cuba’s victory, validated by WHO on June 30, 2015, as the first country in the world to eliminate mother to child transmission of HIV and syphilis. “’Cuba’s success demonstrates that universal access and universal health coverage are feasible and indeed are the key to success, even against challenges as daunting as HIV,’” said the director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the world’s oldest international public health agency. Read more about this accomplishment by clicking here. 

Cuba Today

Cuba has undergone much in the past fifty years, from the Cuban Revolution, to the plummeting of GDP following the fall of the Berlin Wall, to the announcement in 2014 that Cuba and the United States would resume diplomatic relations for the first time in half of a century. Read a poignant first person account about the changes in Cuba over the years, "Revisiting the Cuba of my Youth", written by Mariane Pearl and published in the New York Times, June 19, 2015, by clicking here.

About this Program

The program, limited to 20 participants, may include the following site visits and exchanges:

  • Hospitals, policlínicos (multi-service clinics) and neighborhood consultorios (family doctor-nurse offices) to understand Cuba’s primary, secondary, and tertiary health care delivery sites.
  • Community organizations and specific community projects that support women’s health
  • Research and faculty of academic institutions to discuss Cuba’s national Maternal-Child health priorities and initiatives
  • A maternity home for women with high-risk pregnancies
  • An obstetrics hospital, including observation of Cuba’s breastfeeding program
  • A neighborhood exercise and anti-obesity community project
  • Gender and HIV prevention
  • Alas Por la Vida, breast cancer survival group

Travel arrangements and costs:

Once you have decided to participate in this program, you will register for the exchange, sign a participant agreement form, and send MEDICC a $500 deposit to guarantee your place. Participants make their own domestic flight and hotel arrangements to/in Miami (the latter is subject to change pending the advent of commercial flights from the U.S. to Cuba before Spring 2017). The total cost for a 7-day program varies depending on the number of participants, hotel and ground transportation costs, but will be around $3,800 - $4,500 (prices are subject to change due to extreme demand for travel and rapid change in the Cuban travel/tourism sector.) MEDICC works with Marazul Charters, an experienced Cuba travel provider, to make arrangements.

Cost estimates include:

  • Pre-trip orientation, webinars and relevant readings
  • Roundtrip airfare between Miami and Havana
  • Lodging for 7 nights, including breakfasts and weekday lunches
  • Full program of educational exchanges tailored to your expressed interests
  • Ground transportation in Cuba for all program activities, including airport transfers
  • A MEDICC expert and a specialized interpreter to facilitate your time in Cuba
  • Health insurance while in Cuba, and Cuban academic visa facilitated by MEDICC

If you are interested in participating, contact Elizabeth Sayre, Gateways Program Director, MEDICC (www.medicc.org), to receive a link to the registration form, [email protected]. If you have questions please email or call Elizabeth at (510) 350-3564.

Participants must be members of AWH (www.academyofwomenshealth.org) or ABM (www.bfmed.org) to travel on this exchange. The registration deadline is 10/1/2016. The deposit, a passport scan and other required documents will be due by 10/31/2016.


Since 1997, MEDICC has worked to enhance cooperation among the US, Cuban and global health communities aimed at better health outcomes and equity. MEDICC produced the feature film ¡Salud! and publishes the MEDLINE-indexed journal MEDICC Review. MEDICC supports research in Cuba by US health professionals, assists US students and graduates of Havana’s Latin American Medical School to return to US underserved communities, and organizes Community Partnerships for Health Equity to improve health care and access in communities such as South Los Angeles and Oakland, California; Albuquerque, New Mexico; The Bronx, New York; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and the Navajo Nation. See: www.medicc.org