This paper considers the implications that distinct organising principles for health systems have for the control of infectious diseases. The paper takes the health systems in Mexico and Cuba as examples of neighbouring but widely divergent systems, producing different public health outcomes. The paper will look at the dissimilar organising principles of these two systems, along with their programs and outcomes in relation to five of the most important and dangerous infectious diseases. The paper will then consider what broader lessons might be drawn from the experiences in Cuba and Mexico.

Most of the serious infectious diseases that affect developing countries are no longer the primary health problems of the more wealthy countries. Nor are infectious diseases the main problems of Mexico and Cuba. In recent years, these two countries have been wrestling with these “preventable” diseases and, to varying degrees, have overcome them. Because of their divergent systems and their differing outcomes with infectious diseases, it seems that a comparative study of Mexico and Cuba might be enlightening.

2006 The structuring of health systems and the control of infectious disease: Looking at Mexico and Cuba PDf

Revista Panamericana de salud Pública/Pan American Journal of Public Health, 19(6)