Celia R. Soto, Secretary

Anselmo Abdo
Antonio Pillo
Armando González
Carlos Beltrán
Carlos M. Viciedo
Jorge Lage
Leonardo Pérez
Liana Portela
María de la C. García
Maria del C. Amaro
Mauricio Chinchilla
René Zamora
Roberto Suárez
Sofía Sordo
Tatiana Zaldivar
Yanín Machado
Yazmina Machado
Zulema Afá

• International Committee •

Alan Shewmon USA
Enrico Facco Italy
James J. Hughes USA
Jean-Michel Guérit Belgium
José Domínguez Roldán Spain
Stuart Youngner USA Chairman
Sam Shemie Canadá

Conceptual approach to human death Consciousness in human beings.
Brain death criteria in different countries Coma, persistent vegetative state (PVS), minimally conscious state (MCS), and coma.
Ancillary tests in brain death Clinical diagnosis of coma, PVS and MCS.
Brain death in childhood Neuroimaging techniques for assessing coma, PVS and MCS. (MRI, fMRI, PET, SPECT, Magnetoencephalography.
Anencephalic infants Neurophysiologic tests for assessing coma, PVS and MCS.
End-of-life dilemmas: Terminal patient, euthanasia, assisted suicide, etc. Neurorehabilitation of PVS and MCS.
Legal considerations surrounding brain death and related states Neuroprotection.
Philosophical, theological, sociological, historical and cultural considerations of human death Neurocritical care and Neuromonitoring
Organ and tissue transplants. New trends in cerebral cardio-pulmonar-cerebral resuscitation.
Franz Gerstenbrand, MD Austria
Jean-Michel Guérit, MD Belgium
Phillipe Hantson, MD Belgium
Almir Ferreira de Andrade, MD Brazil
Jorge Curbelo, Ph.D Brazil
Raul Marino Jr, Ph.D Brazil
Leonardo Pérez, Ph.D Cuba
Raúl Herrera, MD Cuba
Sofía Sordo, Ph.D Cuba
Enrico Facco, MD Italy
Alireza Bagheri, MD Japan
Adam Zeman, MD UK
Michael Piradov, MD Russia
José Domínguez Roldán Spain
Bernard Gert, Ph.D. USA

D. Alan Shewmon, MD USA
David Pincus, MD USA
John P. Lizza, Ph.D USA
José I. Suárez, MD USA
Joseph Fins, MD USA
Joseph T. Giacino, Ph.D USA
Kenneth Goodman, Ph.D USA
Linda Emanuel, MD USA
Paul Rousseau, M.D USA
Pim van Lommel, MD USA
E. Roy John, Ph.D USA
Steven Miles, MD USA
Stuart Youngner, MD USA
Ted Rothstein, MD USA
E. Haavi Morreim, Ph.D USA
English and Spanish.

        Registration fee: 30.00 Euros each

  • Cardiopulmonary-cerebral resuscitation in the 21th century.
  • Neuroimaging techniques for assessing disorder of consciousness.
  • Stem cells, and cerebral restoration.
  • New trends in cerebral protection.
  • Donation and transplant organization systems.
  • Intensive care of the organ donors.
  • Immunology and organ transplantation
  • Legal and ethical controversies on the dilemma at the end of life
  • Ethical challenges and medical decision-making
  • Neuromonitoring of critical patients
  • Cerebrovascular disease: current state of knowledge at the threshold in the new millennium.
Powerpoint presentation
Single or dual projection of 35 mm slides
Videos must be presented in DVD or VHS (NTSC 3.58 standard)
Posters must be presented on a 0.95 m wide by 2 m high maximum format

Centro de Convenciones "Plaza América" Varadero, Cuba

DATES: 20-23 MAY, 2008

LANGUAGES: Spanish - English

Lightweight clothing is recommended in Cuba, but you must include some appropiate clothing
for meeting. It is recommended to wear clothes made of cotton, linen or rayon; such as
pullovers, shirts, T-shirts, shorts and comfortable shoes (sandals or and good walking shoes).

Sunglasses, a hat and sun lotion are very necessary, as well as repellants against insects,
especially if you travel to a beach area.


Cubanacán Travel Agency, Official Agent for the V International Symposium of the Definition of Death Network which will be held between the 20th and 23rd of May 2008, at the Convention Center “Plaza América”, in Varadero Beach, submits to your consideration attractive service offers for your stay in Cuba, not only during the duration of the event, but for the days before and after the congress.

Single Room (1 person)
Double Room (2 persons)
Palco (4*)
80.00 CUC
64.00 CUC
Occidental Miramar (4*)
112.00 CUC
84.00 CUC
Meliá Habana (5*)
130.00 CUC
90.00 CUC

All prices are in Cuban Convertible Pesos (CUC), and refer to persons (pax) by night and include:
• Lodging including room and breakfast (CP).
• Transfer from the Havana Internacional Airport to your hotel booked in Havana.
• Transfer from your hotel in Havana to the Havana Internacional Airport.
• Transfer including specialized guide service from your hotel in Havana to your hotel in Varadero.
• Assistance at Havana Internacional Airport.

Single Room (1 person)
Double Room (2 persons)
Mar del Sur (3*)
65.00 CUC
55.00 CUC
Club Tropical (4*)
70.00 CUC
64.00 CUC
Sol Palmeras (4*)
110.00 CUC
80.00 CUC
Melia Varadero (5*)
135.00 CUC
95.00 CUC

All prices are in Cuban Convertible Pesos (CUC), and refer to persons (pax) by night and include:
• Lodging with ALL INCLUDED: Room, breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks, bars, etc. (AI)
• Transfers to the Congress activities; from your hotel to Plaza América Convention Center, for the hotels far    awayi from the venue.
• Transfer to the social activities of the Congress.
• Tranfer from the Varadero Internacional Airport to your hotel booked in Varadero Internacional de (only for    arrivals in Varadero’s Airport).
• Transfer from your hotel in Varadero to Varadero International Airport (only for departures from Varadero’s    Airport)
• Transfer including specialized guide service from your hotel in Varadero to your hotel in Havana (only for    customers that booked at Havana after the Congress)
• Assistance at Varadero Internacional Airport.
• Assistance at the “Plaza America” Convention Center of Varadero.

For customers who will only get accmmodation in Varadero, and their arrival and departure would be from Havana International Airport to their hotel in Varadero, must pay for the transfer as follows:

1 a 3 persons 75.00 CUC x person One Way
4 a 7 persons 25.00 CUC x person One Way
8 a 16 persons 20.00 CUC x person One Way

All prices mentioned above will be valid only from 8 to 20 April 2008, and only include services detailed in each offer aforementioned, and which will meet the established regulations of the Commercial Direction of the Cubanacán Travel Agency for adjustments, payments, and cancellations.

For traveling to Cuba, the participants to any event (with an official local incoming travel agency)  and their accompanists  don't need a special Visa. In each  of their countries they can go to the Cuban Consulates or to the authorized travel agencies for buying a tourist card, the unique document demanded at the entrance border of the country by the immigration authorities, as well with the properly up-to-date passport.
On request, the Secretariat will be glad to send you a personal invitation for the Symposium. It should be understood that such an invitation is not a commitment on the part of the organizers to provide any financial support.

350.00 Euros
- Badge
- Symposium documentation
- Access to all Symposium activities
- Certificate of presentation and/or attendance
- Welcome cocktail
- Farewell party

Accompanying persons
100.00 Euros
- Badge
- Access to all activities for accompanying persons
- Opening and closing ceremonies
- Access to all social and cultural activities
- Souvenir
For American Citizens contact:

Bob Guild
Marazul Tours
4100 Park Avenue
Weehawken, NJ 07086
(800) 223-5334
(201) 319-1054
(201) 319-8970 FAX

Dr. Calixto Machado, MD, Ph.D.
5th International Symposium of the Definition of Death Network

Instituto de Neurología y Neurocirugía
29 y D, Vedado, Apartado Postal 4268
Ciudad de La Habana 10400
Tel.: 537-838 3034
Fax:  537-838 3020
E-mail:  braind@infomed.sld.cu



Located at the entrance to the Gulf of Mexico in the middle of the Caribbean Sea, The Republic of Cuba is actually an archipelago comprised by the Isle of Youth (a special municipality) and 4 195 keys and islets for a total area of 110 860 Km2. Its neighboring countries are Haiti, United States, Jamaica and Mexico.

The weather is always mellow in Cuba. This hospitable and multi-ethnic country is blessed with a sunny tropical climate and a mean annual temperature of 25 degrees Celsius. The average temperature in summer is 27 degrees C and 21 degrees in winter. December, January and February are the coolest months while July and August are the warmest.

Official name: Republic of Cuba.
Capital: Havana City, with a population of 2´ 200, 000 inhabitants.
Official language: Spanish.
Area: 110,860 Km2 (42, 843 square miles)
Population: 11´ 200, 000 inhabitants. (Demographic density =101 inhabitants x Km2).
Ethnic Composition: 60% Spanish descendents, 22% mulattos and mixed, 11% African descendents and 1% Chinese descendents.
National Holiday: January 1st
National Anthem: Himno de Bayamo (Hymn of Bayamo) by Perucho Figueredo).
Religion: 47% Catholics, 4% Protestants, 2% Santeria and other African cults also practiced by many Catholics.
Political regimen: Socialist Republic.
Head of State and Government: Fidel Castro.
GDP: $ 20 billions USD.
PIB per capita: $ 1.786 billion USD.
Annual growth: 2.5%.
Leading industries: Sugar, mining, tobacco, agriculture, pharmaceuticals and tourism.
Leading Trade Partners: Western Europe, Latin America, Russia, China, Iran and North Korea.
Political-Administrative Division: Cuba is divided into 14 provinces and a special municipality Isle of Youth (formerly Isle of Pines).

Sub-tropical and humid, with two distinctive seasons: dry (winter) from November through April and rainy (summer) from May through October. The mean annual temperature is 25° C, with an average of 20º C in winter and 26-27º C in summer.

The Cuban convertible peso is the only currency accepted in business establishments throughout the country, for the purchase of service and goods, so you will need to exchange your Canadian dollars or sterling pound or any other foreign currency into convertible pesos at the hotel reception or at an international bank.
For more information, please visit: http://www.bc.gov.cu/English/home.asp
Canadian dollars and foreign currency may be converted with an 8% fee. Canadian (and any other foreign) credit card purchases will be processed with an 11.24% fee. US dollars may be exchanged at 18% commission fee. US-issued credit cards and travelers cheques are not accepted in Cuba. All fees are subject to change.
The currency exchange service will be provided at the airports, hotels, banks and exchange houses.
International credit (no issued by american's banks) will continue to be accepted in Cuba, either to pay for services or to draw cash from ATM machines. No levy will be charged on card transactions.
Departure tax will be paid in Cuban convertible pesos which at present is $25.00 CUC. This is paid at the airport and must be paid in cash.

Any visitor needs a Cuban visa or tourist card, which allows a stay of 30 days in the country, and usually could be extended for 30 extra days. Usually, visas for all nationalities can be obtained at the Cuban Embassy in your country, directly from your travel agent or at your arrival in the International Airport of Havana.

Is is important that you make sure that your travel insurance policy covers you for those territorial limits.

Practically all hotels have good international telephone service, both for receiving calls from abroad and for dialing from Cuba. Most hotels offer telephone service in the lobby for non-guests, and many have installed direct international dialing from guest rooms. International calls can also be made from public telephones using the prepaid debit cards.
Cuba operates two different cell phone networks (TDMA and GSM). Cuba currently have roaming agreements with several countries, and if your is one of them you could bring your cellphone and use it in Cuba. Cellular telephones are also available for rent by visitors
GSM Standard (European standard), in the 900 mHz band. For further information (about using your own phone or renting a cell phone), contact the company C_COM at Calle 3ra. A # 9402 e/ 94 y 96, Miramar, Playa, phone number (53 7) 204-1640.
TDMA Standard (American standard), in the 800 mHz band. For further information (about using your own phone or renting a cell phone), contact the company CUBACEL at Calle 28 # 510 e/ 5ta. y 7ma., Miramar, Playa, phone number (53 7) 80-2222.

Cuba uses 110 volt, some more luxury hotels also have 220 volts.
Remember to bring the adapters for your electrical equipments, especially those delegates from Europe.


Located on the northernmost part of the island of Cuba, Varadero Beach runs along the narrow Hicacos Peninsula for 22 Km (over 13.5 miles). It has a wide strip of fine, white sand that slopes gently into the sea, whose warm, clear waters encompass an incomparable range of blues.
Varadero began to be developed as a summer vacation resort in the 1940s, but it was not until the last ten years that its network of hotels and other facilities was given an unprecedented boost. Its tourist offer was both diversified and upgraded.
Its main attraction has always been its marvelous beach, but this is not all it has to offer. You can explore its caves and escarpments, a necklace of virgin keys that are easy to get to and the carefully preserved natural landscape at the northeastern end of the peninsula. In addition, Cárdenas, the nearby city of Matanzas, the Zapata Peninsula and the San Miguel de los Baños Spa offer cultural, historic and natural attractions.
Varadero's Plaza America Conference Center has all the facilities needed for conferences and incentive tourism.
Varadero is a free port and has exceptionally good conditions for scuba diving, deep-sea fishing, yachting and other water sports. You can access Cuba's most visited beach by road. The world-famous resort is 130 kilometers east of Havana. You can also travel by plane, landing at Juan Gualberto Gómez International Airport, on the road that links the city of Matanzas with Varadero.

Plaza América Convention Center

The Plaza América Convention Center offers a complete, functional  network of services for  holding events in the surroundings of the famous Cuban beach of Varadero. Plaza América can accommodate up to 1,900 people in its 8 halls at a single session.  Its meeting room can welcome a maximum of 650 people.  This center, in an area of first class hotels, is a few meters from the beach and near an 18-hole golf course.  Varadero International airport is 25 minutes away and Havana is only half an hour away by road.

Meeting facilities
• Air Conditioning  • Audio System  • Video System  • Simultaneous  • Translation  • Slide Projector  • Audio Recording

General services
• Restaurant  • Cafeteria  • Press Room  • Cloak Room  • Disabled Facilities  • Public Address System  • Executive Office  • Fax  • Medical Services

PLAZA AMERICA                 SALON                 VARADERO

550 m2
Press Room
70 m2
Room A
380 m2
Room B
380 m2
Room C
90 m2
Room D
92 m2
Room E
218 m2
Room G
227 m2

Plaza América Convention Center
Autopista Sur km. 11. Varadero. Matanzas
Tel:(53 45) 66-8181 & 66-8193
Fax:(53 45) 66-8163

WEBMASTER: Frank Rodriguez micorreo.frank@gmail.com

      Dear colleagues,
   Since its foundation in 1996, the Definition of Death Network from the International Association of Bioethics (IAB), has maintained a fruitful discussion about all medical and ethical issues related to human death, end-of-life dilemmas, and consciousness disorders.
   We have the pleasure of inviting you to attend the 5th International Symposium of the Definition of Death Network, organized by the International Association of Bioethics, to be held at the “Plaza America Convention Center”, in Varadero Beach, Cuba, on May 20-23, 2008.
   Since ancient times, man has pondered the mystery of his own death. It seemed that by knowing the meaning of his death, he would be prepared to understand the reason for his life. For ages, people considered life to exist as long as an individual was breathing. It was later realized that respiration was a means of maintaining the heart, which circulated the blood. The focus then turned to cardio-respiratory function. But, in the middle of this century, physicians became aware that the brain required much more energy than other organs and that, if its needs were not met, it would cease to function, while other parts of the body (requiring less energy) might preserve their activity provided that respiration was supported by intensive care. The result would be a dead brain in a viable body. French neurologists and neurophysiologists documented this at the end of the 1950s. Is such a patient alive or dead? More and more, brain death as death of the individual, was widely accepted.
   Although some decades have passed, there are still worldwide controversies about a concept of human death on neurological grounds. There are also disagreements on the diagnostic criteria for brain death, whether clinical alone or clinical plus ancillary tests. Moreover, some scholars who were strong defenders of a brain-based standard of death are now favoring a circulatory-respiratory standard.
   Moreover, the Terry Schiavo, and other famous cases, have raised new controversies about the diagnosis and management of the persistent vegetative, the minimally conscious state, etc. Hence, the disorders of consciousness discussions are actual and permanent subjects for debate in the media and scientific discussion in any forum
   Our main goal is to provide a suitable scientific platform to discuss all topics related to human death, end-of-life dilemmas, and disorders of consciousness.
Cubans will sincerely offer you a warm hospitality. This small Caribbean Island, with the greenness of its countryside surrounded by an incredible blue sea, will provide the most proper venue to remember that when we discuss about death, we are defending that human beings should live and die with dignity.

Calixto Machado Dr. Calixto Machado, MD, PhD
President of the Symposium
Important Dates
Deadline for Submission of Abstracts: 30 November,2007
Congress: 20 - 23 May, 2008
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