The IPK denies that there are three cases of coronavirus in Cuba

HAVANA, Feb. 29 The Institute of Tropical Medicine “Pedro Kourí” (IPK) denied on Friday the rumours circulating on the Island about three cases of Cuban patients from Italy infected with the coronavirus.The medical institution said that it is false that three Cuban citizens had returned to the country with symptoms of respiratory disease, and that they were admitted to the IPK, according to a note published by the Technical Youth magazine.

Recently, officials from the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) of Cuba said that the Island has no suspected or confirmed cases of coronavirus.

The evening news of the Cuban Television reiterated this Friday that “until today” no cases of the so-called covid-19 have been reported in the country, according to a statement from the ministry itself.

Francisco Durán García, national director of epidemiology at MINSAP, said the country is maintaining “strict epidemiological surveillance and sanitary control at the border” to minimize the risk of virus entry, and that it has “an intersectoral confrontation plan, led by the MINSAP and Civil Defense, “according to a note from the official Cubadebate portal.

At the beginning of the month, Durán García had reported that the first suspected cases of coronavirus in Cuba were admitted to isolation in the IPK, and in “the odd hospital”, where they were being studied for a diagnosis.

He also indicated then that people who travelled “in the last 14 days to China and who have symptoms similar to those caused by the coronavirus” had been isolated, although he did not specify whether they were all Cuban citizens or of any other nationality.

According to health authorities, Cuba has not taken measures to isolate people from China, Japan and South Korea, and the specific diagnosis is made only to those who have characteristic symptoms of the coronavirus and who have visited China.

Previously, health sector executives also denied rumours about the first case of coronavirus 2019-nCov in the country; confusion generated when American newspapers reported a person infected in Santa Clara, California, and some Cubans assumed that it was the province of the same name on the Island.

For his part, the Cuban ambassador to China, Carlos Miguel Pereira Hernández, said that there is also no case of infection of coronavirus among Cubans residing in that Asian country.