Two Portuguese physicians were selected to attend an aerospace medicine course at the University of Texas, in collaboration with NASA, after going through several classification phases at curricular and motivational levels, and physical exams.
“At a professional level it represents a big first step and a huge challenge, both in the development of my still short career, and in the space medicine in Portugal, since it is a very prestigious course, at a world renowned institution, recognized by its huge scientific breakthroughs and discoveries”, acknowledged Pedro Caetano, one of the physicians.
Caetano explained that “aerospace medicine is a preventive and occupational medical area where patients are mainly cabin crew members (astronauts, pilots, crew and future tourists) involved in space flights.”
In general, the physician explained, he tries to discover, prevent and treat several adverse and hostile physiological responses encountered in a aerospace atmosphere.
Pedro Caetano’s objective is to be an aerospace and aeronautic physician, with the “purpose of being able to work with NASA or ESA (European Space Agency), or even importing the acquired knowledge into the national and European scope”.
Caetano completed the course in 2012 at the Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar at the Universidade do Porto, and is working on getting his masters in General and Family Medicine at USF – Nova Via, in Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal.