Today, the Minister of Public Health of Cuba, José Ángel Portal, called for enhanced health care precautions against Covid-19, especially in western provinces where the tropical storm is expected to pass in the next few hours.
Cuba Is on Alert for Storm Ida
"The double threat posed by Covid-19 and the hurricane season forces us to be more alert. Facing a meteorological phenomenon of this nature in the midst of the complex epidemiological scenario of the country, implies a greater effort on the part of the Public Health System and the entire population," said the headline on his Facebook account.
He also pointed out that even under the threat of Ida, it is vital to ensure the continuity of medical assistance in isolation centers for Covid-19 patients and other established epidemiological actions.
"That is our priority in the provinces that could be affected and currently in a hurricane alarm phase such as Pinar del Río, Havana, Mayabeque, Artemisa and the special municipality of Isla de la Juventud," he stressed.
He pointed out that the measures adopted to face the tropical storm cannot constitute violations or promote the transmission of the disease.
"We call the attention in particular to safeguard pregnant women, girls, and boys, as well as older adults, population groups where the risk of contagion increases," he explained.
He stressed that medical and surgical brigades could reinforce medical assistance in remote areas and that pharmacies located in coastal flood danger zones are specified.
"The health services have not stopped and they will not. We only ask our people to comply with the Civil Defense guidelines with discipline, be informed, and responsibly apply each of the measures that prevent the spread of this dangerous virus," concluded Portal.
The epidemiological scenario for Covid-19 in western Cuban territories is complex, with figures that exceed 900 daily cases in Pinar del Río and Havana and 400 in Artemisa and Mayabaque. Only the Isle of Youth keeps the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the disease, controlled.
All these provinces and the special municipality are in a cyclonic alarm phase because Ida has maximum sustained winds of 95 kilometers per hour, with higher gusts, and will continue to gain in organization and intensity while moving along those directions.