Dirk van KuppeveltDr. Dirk van Kuppevelt - Netherlands - Keynote Speaker

Dr. Dirk van Kuppevelt is a rehabilitation physician specialized in Spinal Cord Injury working at the St. Maartenskliniek in Nijmegen (The Netherlands) for the last 20 years. Until 2015 he was medical head of the rehabilitation department and trainer in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
for residents from Nijmegen and from the University of Leuven (Belgium). From 2004-2010 he was a member of the Executive Board of ISPO-International. Until present: member of the Council and scientific committee of ISCoS. In 2014 he was the Chair of the organizing committee of the ISCoS world congress in Maastricht. He is a former (vice) president of the Dutch Flemish Spinal Cord Society. In 2002 he received the Heyendaal Award for Post Academic Education. Also in 2002 he received the Lars Sullivan Award (Presentation that best adheres to the idea of comprehensive system care of spinal cord injuries at the ASIA \ IMSOP World congress). He is author of several peer-reviewed articles concerning Spinal Cord Injury. His special interests are sexuality / fertility in Spinal Cord Injury and aging with Spinal Cord Injury.

Dr Juan David MartinaDr. Juan Martina - Curacao

Juan Martina, MD Physiatrist, is currently senior consultant at Rehabilitation Centre Curacao, Dutch Caribbean. Until the 1st of October 2015 he was the chairman of the rehabilitation department and chief instructor of the P&RM Residency program at Medisch Spectrum Twente Hospital and vice-chairman of the Medical Staff of Roessingh Rehabilitation Centre in Enschede, The Netherlands.

His areas of interest are traumatic brain injury, spasticity and medical technology. With his experience in these fields Dr. Martina has contributed in numerous occasions as an invited lecturer to different scientific conferences worldwide.

He graduated from Universidad Javeriana Medical School in Bogota, Colombia and received his formal training in Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine at the University Hospital in Groningen, The Netherlands. After his residency he returned to Curaçao where in 1989 he
started his practice as the first Physiatrist of the Dutch Caribbean. In 1996 Dr. Martina was appointed CEO and Medical director of the Sint Elisabeth Hospital, a position he held until 2001 when he returned to The Netherlands to become medical director and later on CEO at Rehabilitation Centre Groot Klimmendaal in Arnhem.

During his career he has entertained international relationships with colleagues from all over the world, and collaborated in different projects in South America, the U.S of America, China and Europe. From 1998 until 2004 he formed part of the Executive Board of the International Society of Prosthetics and Orthotics. In 2003 he chaired the first International Consensus Conference on Orthotic Management of Stroke held in Ellecom, The Netherlands, with participation of more than 20 countries.

Dr. Juan Martina was the president of the Board of the Dutch Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (VRA) from March 2009 until November 2014 and was vice-chairman of the National Innovation Steering Committee of the rehabilitation branch association (RN) until 2015.


Ayal fotoDrs Ayal Zahavi - Curacao
Drs Zahavi was born in Curaçao and did his secondary education at Peter Stuyvesant College. He received his Bachelor of Science at New York University where he specialized in biology and mathematics. Thereafter he received his medical degree at Tufts University Medical School in Boston. He worked as a resident at the St. Elisabeth Hospital in the departments of internal medicine, neurology and orthopedics prior to his specialization in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in Groningen, Netherlands. He has since then been working as a specialist in Rehabilitation here in Curaçao at the rehabilitation centre (Revalidatiecentrum Curaçao).



ellen maasDr. Ellen Maas - Netherlands

Ellen Maas was born in Doetinchem on 26 May 1975. She studied medicine at the University of Maastricht, where she obtained her MD degree in 1999. She performed science internship in the field of Gynecology in the hospital in Debrecen, Hungary. Hereafter she attended “co-schap” intern rehabilitation at Roessingh Centre for rehabilitation.

In December 1999 she began to work as port physician at the Medisch Spectrum Twente in Oldenzaal. Here she gained experience in the field of surgery, internal medicine and obstetrics. In 2001 she did AGNIO rehabilitation medicine for a rehabilitation center at Roessingh in Enschede. At this institution she also followed her training to become a physiatrist from 2002 to 2006. During her studies she has conducted research on complications and secondary effects of the upper extremities in patients with cervical spinal cord injury. After completing her training Ellen Maas started working at the Medisch Spectrum Twente in Enschede, with a focus on neurological rehabilitation. Since 2012 she has been working as a rehabilitation specialist at the department of Roessingh center for spinal cord injury rehabilitation.

Woet Dr. Woet L. Gianotten - Netherlands

In the first 9 years of his career he was only involved in medicine, working for 5½ years as a
tropical doctor in West and East Africa. In the course of his training to become a gynecologist, he got very fascinated by the new field of sexology. So he left gynecology, was trained as a psychotherapist and carried on in sexology.

Gradually he moved to the field of ‘medical sexology’, where the sexual disturbances are mainly based on somatic causes (like cancer, chronic disease, physical impairment and medical interventions).

Till his retirement he was Senior Lecturer in Medical Sexology in the University Medical Centers of Rotterdam and Utrecht. He is consultant in Rehabilitation Sexology and still has a part-time job in de Trappenberg, a center for physical rehabilitation in Huizen, the Netherlands. He is consultant in oncosexology and one of the founding members of ISSC (International Society for Sexuality and Cancer).

He was chief editor of the Dutch book ‘Sexuality in Disease and Physical Impairment’ (2008). Nowadays the majority of his work consists of teaching. He is visiting professor in Malta, Warszawa (Poland), Grimstad (Norway), Interlake(Switzerland), and at the ESSM Oxford Course for Sexual Medicine in Budapest (Great-Britain).


Federico MonteroDr. Federico Montero - Costa Rica

As a young medical intern, Federico Montero was driving home from work when he fell asleep and crashed. The accident left him dependent on a wheelchair for his mobility, but it also brought him to a new career path that has focused on improving the treatment and standards of care for people with disability Dr. Montero was born in Costa Rica and carried out his medical studies at the University of Guadalajara in México and University of Costa Rica. After graduating from medical school and working for a period of time as a general practitioner, he went to England where he worked at the National Spinal Injury Centre, Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury, Rivermead Rehabilitation Centre in Oxford and Lodgmore Hospital in Sheffield. He then went to work to the National Rehabilitation Centre in Costa Rica, where he organized and was the responsible of the first Spinal Injury Unit in the country. He also organized and coordinated outpatient clinics on spina bifida, pressure ulcers, and participated actively in the rehabilitation management of persons with all kinds of impairments, and from all age groups.

Aside from his regular clinical activities at the National Rehabilitation Centre in San José, Costa Rica, Dr. Montero has been a member of various professional rehabilitation organizations, and has been involved in other activities related to disability and rehabilitation. These include being the President of the National Council on Disability, founder Member of the Forum for Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities, President of the Latin American Medical Society of Rehabilitation, and Member of the Editorial Board of the Journal "Paraplegia". He has also been active in academic activities at the Physiotherapy school and the Postgraduate program on Physical Medicine Rehabilitation of the University of Costa Rica. Dr. Montero worked with WHO’s Disability and Rehabilitation Team from 2002 to 2007, rising to become its Coordinator.


Jeanne KoeyersDr. Jeanne Koeyers - Curacao

Born on Curacao. Trained and educated in the Netherlands, Maastricht University Medical Center. Research field: Urinary tract infections in man and Medical education. She works as an Internist-intensivist-acute medicine at the St. Elisabeth Hospital, Curacao, Dutch Caribbean in internal medicine and intensive care since November 2007.

Her aim is to provide adequate care for the emergency and critically ill patient on the island through education.

Together with colleagues she set up and organized for 6 years in a row a 6 day course named the Caribbean Emergency Care Conference. In 2015 local physicians were trained for the advanced trauma life support and became instructors.

Juan CastaoDr. Juan Carlos Castaño Botero - Colombia

Urologist - specialist in Neuro-Urology

Dr. Juan Carlos Castaño Botero is coordinator of functional Urology Clinic University CES - UroGine unit, Medellin Colombia. He is Teacher of the postgraduate course in urology and Gynecology University CES - Medellin Colombia and teacher of the postgraduate child Nephrology and adults Universidad de Antioquia - Medellin, Colombia.

Coordinator of the Working Group of urodynamic of the American Confederation of Urology – CAU Member of the Committee of the Iberoamerican society of neuro-urology and urogynecology neurourology – SINUG

Member of the Committee of the International Continence Society neurourology - ICS has been a pioneer in Latin America in the implementation of the neurostimulation of sacral roots in injured neurogenic bladder management techniques of sacral neuromodulation for the treatment of neurogenic and not neurogenic urinary dysfunction and spinal cord.

willy harmsWilly Anthony Harms - Curacao

Willy Anthony Harms, better known as “Junny” or “ Boogie” has developed an early interest in sports for the disabled as he grow up with a cousin with Down Syndrome. His interests for this field ultimately resulted in him pursuing a career in sports and recreation in which as for now he has labored professionally for 25 years. Before becoming locally employed at the local sports institute FDDK he challenged the patience of several professors at the CIOS institute in Holland and Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. Currently he is a manager at the Sports Institute of Curacao, where he coordinates special projects and subsidies. For a long time Junny has handled being a full-time sport instructor, serving different organizations on a pro-bono basis, performing as a high profile deejay (under the alias “boogieman”) and at the same time maintaining several time consuming hobbies such as dog training and adventure diving.

Junny is working with five organizations which one way or another enhance the quality of life of people with a disability. Those are: Asosasion Totolika (President), Special Olympics Curacao (National Director), Paralympics (President), Johan Cruyff Court Beheerstichting (boardmember) and Aminta Sprockel Challenger Little League
(boardmember). At the moment Junny is still pushing his limits in any activity that he undertakes using his strongest assets: commitment, passion and integrity.

YoycelineYoyceline Lovert - Curacao

My name is Yoyceline Lovert and I am 38 years old. I have a complete spinal cord injury T10 and became a paraplegic at the age of 23. The cause, a shot from a gun. Initially I received my therapy in Medellin Colombia, where I had achieved walking with a walker wearing knee devices. Hereafter I came to Curacao and was for a period without therapy. I started later with therapy for a period of 2 years. They have helped me try to walk again, but it was not possible. On my own I am doing some exercise at home.

The life in the beginning was very hard because it is a new system. You have to adapt to it, depending on your own strength to move forward. Accepting the reality makes the process move easier. At the present I am not receiving therapy. I am a mother, working at home and I have practically a normal life.

Eithel BaromeoEithel Baromeo - Curacao

My name is Eithel Baromeo. I was born on Curacao. After my study of Electrical Engineering I went to The Netherlands. Hereafter I prepared myself in the medical care area and went to work on an Ambulance for GG&GD Amsterdam. I've done a specialized training for ambulance staff at “Stichting Opleiding Scholing Ambulance”. I returned to Curacao to work for GGD, CEMS at now “Fundashon Kuido Ambulans”. I’m an instructor for reanimation and AED. I’m vice president of A.T.S.K., “Asosiashon Trafiko Sigur Korsou”, the association for safe traffic Curacao and also member of the Red Cross. I have also specialized on how to make wounds and act as a victim for EHBO lessons and calamity training.


Maritza BecherMaritza Becher -  Curacao

Maritza Azriella Becher LL.M was born in Curaçao. Prior to becoming an attorney, Maritza founded Magnum Productions and worked as a producer and businesswoman for several years. Maritza has worked as a CEO to several companies. In the past 35 years Maritza has lent her services to various important social projects for Curaçao, and in 2003 co-founded Hands of Hope, a charitable organization for children’s needs. Currently Maritza teaches part-time Administrative and Constitutional law at the University of the Dutch Caribbean and works as an Attorney at Law and Legal consultant at B-Legal. Maritza also serves on the boards of the Antillean Lawyers Association and the Consumers’ Association.