Guyanese students at minimal risk of contracting cholera in Cuba – Health Ministry
Guyanese students in Cuba are said to be at minimal risk of contracting cholera while on the island. Guyana’s Ministry of Health is monitoring the situation of the outbreak of cholera in Cuba where that nation’s Health Ministry has reportedly confirmed dozens of cases.
This is according to the local Health Ministry in a press statement yesterday.
The release stated that on July 11, Cuba reported that from July 3, a total of 110 cholera cases were confirmed, including three deaths, which have been recorded in the Granma province. The national authorities confirmed that the Vibrio cholerae strain of the outbreak has been characterized as toxigenic V. cholerae, serogroup O1; serotype Ogawa, biotype El Tor.
It was noted that Cuban Health authorities have implemented an active management and prevention plan for cholera and has implemented necessary sanitary control measures to avoid further spread of the disease in the country and beyond its borders.
It assured that measures for prevention and control continue to be implemented and the investigation is ongoing.
Meanwhile, local Health Ministry had developed a plan to “Stop Cholera” in Guyana when the outbreak was detected in Haiti in 2012. It has since embarked on a number of measures within the health system.
The plan includes strengthened port vigilance and border area surveillance for all inbound travelers; upgrade to the national syndromic surveillance system to enhance daily reports from sentinel sites around the capital and in strategic areas such as Region One, Region Two, Region Six and Region Nine; and enhance the capacity of the national laboratory system to test for and confirm cholera from stool samples.
Other measures include developing and implementing an awareness campaign to educate the public on the risk of diarrhea, management of cases and control measures; stock all the essential medicines and supplies needed to manage cholera at all health facilities; and develop and implement plan along with several stakeholders (PAHO/WHO, UNICWF and GWI) to improve sanitation and hygiene nationwide.
The release assured that the Surveillance and Pandemic Committee of the Ministry will continue to monitor the situation in the Region and will provide regular feedback on the situation to the media.