HAVANA (Reuters) – Cuba put Havana back in lockdown on Saturday after corona virus cases resurfaced, requiring restaurants, bars and swimming pools to once again close, suspend public transport and beach access is prohibited.
FILE PHOTO: People queue to buy food amid concerns about the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), in Havana, Cuba, July 8, 2020. REUTERS / Alexandre Meneghini
Cuba, touted as a rare Latin American success story about handling textbooks and preventing coronavirus outbreaks, relaxed restrictions on door locks last month after the cases reduce to a little bit every day.
But they have risen back to April levels in the past two weeks, with the Health Department reporting 59 cases on Saturday and saying the situation could become “uncontrollable” if the authorities don’t act quickly. .
“We are witnessing a new epidemiological outbreak that puts our entire population in danger,” Cuban Health Minister José Angel Portal said during a daily coronavirus press conference on Thursday. Seven.
Cuba’s well-documented free community-based health system, along with measures such as strict isolation of patients and those who come into contact with them, allows to keep cases below 2,900 with 88 cases. death to a population of 11 million.
Authorities though praised Cubans for losing their guard after the ban was loosened, not properly kept distance or masked, mandatory behaviors in public spaces and congregations. large groups.
One of the latest major events of the local lineage originated in a religious gathering.
But many new cases – 41 of the 59 reported on Saturday – are also imported, usually from Venezuela. There was no widespread travel in Cuba due to the pandemic, so most of the returnees were likely from 20,000 medical personnel stationed in Cuba’s leftist ally.
Anyone entering this country is placed on quarantine in a state facility for 14 days to prevent infection from such cases.
While the Cuban outbursts focus on Havana, Portal said authorities will need to carefully monitor the rest of the country due to the large number of asymptomatic carriers and the already nationwide movements. happened in the past month.
Reported by Sarah Marsh, Edited by Franklin Paul