Emmanuel Abreu is a first-generation medical doctor born and trained in the Dominican Republic. Emmanuel grew up in a suburban area of Santo Domingo.
Graduating from medical school in 2017 his journey was marked by public-health activism and part-time research assistantships. He obtained his master’s degree in bioethics in 2019 in Santander, Spain. His master’s thesis was a bioethical analysis of the stigma perceived by HIV patients in rural communities within the Dominican Republic. Emmanuel’s research contributed to the development of the first protocol for pre-exposure prophylaxis in the country. He moved into the pain research space shortly after enrolling into a doctoral program at the International Iberoamerican University in Mexico city.
Emmanuel now oversees a growing research program at a community pain clinic in Vancouver (CHANGEpain clinic). He is currently involved in research projects with the Chronic Pain Centre of Excellence for Canadian Veterans, University of British Columbia, University of Alberta, and Western University. Most of his research relates to improving telemedicine access for patients with chronic pain, surgical optimization for patients with chronic pain, and studies related to the usage of ketamine for major depressive disorder and chronic pain.
Emmanuel is working towards his full Canadian medical license and he aspires to contribute to solving the increasing shortage of family physicians of British Columbia. He lives in Vancouver with his partner and two dogs, Waldo & Rocco.
Statement of Interest:
Delivering pain care to underrepresented groups is paramount for anyone aspiring to better serve the chronic pain community. While the past two years have been exhausting for everyone, this period has been especially difficult for those trying to obtain pain care. If I am honored with this position, I would encourage the inclusion of trainees with diverse abilities, skills, and backgrounds. I firmly believe that one answer to the many issues related to pain lies in the investment in the up-and-coming generation of scientists. These are innovators who can continue to break current science paradigms and advance research and care.
In order to help encourage ideas, approaches and solutions from various backgrounds, it is crucial to implement a platform that allows interpersonal connection between trainees. Over the course of my career, I have had the opportunity to volunteer for several organizations where networking, communication and relationship building have been vital. During the period of 2016-2020, I was able to collaborate with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA-DR). This involved connecting different chapters from around the world and coordinating public health prevention campaigns among medical trainees. Most of these campaigns touched on common aspects of chronic pain, such as mental health and early access to providers. As trainee representative, I would continue to forge new connections and create communities where all trainees are included and supported.
The Canadian Pain Society has provided me with rich insight regarding my career and has helped connect me to mentors who have supported my growth as both a researcher and a clinician. I am eager to see how the CPS will continue to improve the well-being of the pain care community, and I am equally thrilled to participate in this trajectory of improving widespread accessibility to pain care.