Our girl in Havana
- By: Anna Ellis
Cigars, salsa, old American cars, and socialism. Anna Ellis spent her elective in Cuba to learn about this fascinating Caribbean island
Cuba's healthcare system is one of the successes of the revolution of 1959. Its doctors are highly skilled and very dedicated, and the concept of waiting for an operation or even an appointment is alien to a Cuban. Yet Cuba suffers from its dismal economy and remains an arch enemy of the United States, even finding itself on the US list of terrorist states. My interest in this contradiction and discovery of Cuban salsa took me to Havana in the sweltering heat of July and August 2002.
Cuba is a poor country. It is hard to fit around the traditional concept of a “developing” country because it has highly advanced health and education systems. Yet it is by no means on a par with the developed world.