The curious case of Cuba

Am J Public Health. 2012 Aug;102(8):e13-22. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2012.300822. Epub 2012 Jun 14.


As health professionals in the United States consider how to focus health care and coverage to ensure better, more equitable patient and population health outcomes, the experience of Cuba's National Health System over the last 5 decades may provide useful insights. Although mutual awareness has been limited by long-term political hostilities between the United States and Cuban governments, the history and details of the Cuban health system indicate that their health system merits attention as an example of a national integrated approach resulting in improved health status. More extensive analysis of the principles, practices, and outcomes in Cuba is warranted to inform health system transformation in the United States, despite differences in political-social systems and available resources.

MeSH terms

  • Community Health Services / standards
  • Cuba
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated / organization & administration*
  • Family Practice / education
  • Family Practice / standards
  • Health Planning Guidelines
  • Health Policy
  • Humans
  • National Health Programs / economics
  • National Health Programs / organization & administration*
  • National Health Programs / trends
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • State Medicine / organization & administration
  • United States
  • Universal Health Insurance / economics
  • Universal Health Insurance / standards