Border health surveillance point at the entrance of Las Tunas city

"The reports about the deficiencies in compliance with the measures against the COVID-19 in several Cuban provinces are very useful to address those that would be occurring here," reflected Dr. Viviana Gutiérrez Rodríguez, provincial director of Health, during the periodic evaluation that the Temporary Working Group in the Government makes about the confrontation with the pandemic here.

Las Tunas, Cuba.- Meanwhile, government authorities reinforced the surveillance in the town of Bartle in the face of a worrying increase in positives for SARS-CoV-2 there.

The quality of the inquiry that causes delays in detecting suspicious cases, the low perception of risk, and the speed in the isolation of the contacts of confirmed cases were some of the criticisms that the highest leadership of the country made to the provinces of Havana, Pinar del Río and Mayabeque, which would partially explain why these are the areas of the country with the worst situation in terms of the number of daily diagnosed cases with the new coronavirus, as well as the incidence rate of per 100,000 of its inhabitants.
However, these problems are also occurring in the Balcón del Oriente Cubano (Balcony of Eastern Cuba), warned Gutiérrez Rodríguez, who also commented that it is still possible to prevent reaching such severe scenarios.

Only on Monday, more than 100 contacts of confirmed cases were waiting for their admission to isolation centers in the municipality of Las Tunas, which right now has the worst epidemiological panorama since it concentrates 23 of the 32 existing transmission foci. In this regard, Dr. Yordanis Pupo Pérez, municipal director of Health, reported that to face this situation, 120 new capacities were enabled at the Lenin campus of the University of Las Tunas and the Simón Bolívar mixed center.

He added that the recently inaugurated Molecular Biology Laboratory got off to a good start processing the first PCR test samples as part of its certification process under the supervision of experts from the Pedro Kourí Institute of Tropical Medicine.

During the day, it was learned that for the second consecutive week the real number of new positives to SARS-CoV-2 in this province was below the estimates of the mathematical models. This would corroborate the effectiveness of the measures to reinforce epidemiological surveillance that entered into force on March 29.

However, it is too early to relax, because as the data from the professors of the University showed, the total number of new patients in the week that ended last Saturday was larger than in the same previous period. According to the experts, and taking into account the trend of the pandemic in the 70 days before April 10, in the week that began on April 11, some 53 new cases will be detected; but if we take as a reference what happened in the 98 days that preceded last Saturday, then it could be 56.

COVID-19 in Las Tunas


The Temporary Working Group pays particular attention to the epidemiological situation in the Popular Council 11, which includes the town of Bartle, also in the municipality of Las Tunas. In the last 15 days, around a single source of transmission, eight patients with COVID-19 were detected, a figure that is almost half of all those diagnosed in that place since the pandemic began. Right now, that Health area, corresponding to the Alberto Arcos Luque polyclinic, has the highest incidence rate of the province for the last 15 days.

For this reason, the local government has ostensibly limited the mobility of people there, locating six health checkpoints and prohibiting movement after 7:00 at night until dawn. At the same time, Dr. Pupo Pérez informed, the blocks that surround the Run Factory were closed and a population study was started with the taking of PCR samples from residents in that industrial zone. "The purpose is to prevent the occurrence of a local transmission event," he explained.

However, Juana Yamilka Viñals, president of the Municipal Assembly of the People's Power in the provincial capital, warned that these regulations could not be implemented without the collaboration of the companies and institutions whose workers reside in Bartle and would be being unnecessarily authorized to travel to the city of Las Tunas.

The province woke up on Monday with an accumulated 679 positive cases, 163 imported and 516 autochthonous, with two deaths, for a fatality rate of 0.29 percent.