OnCuba Staff

OnCuba Staff

Cienfuegos. Photo: Travel to Cuba.

Cienfuegos residents inquire about sources of employment

More than 1,600 people have applied for employment in state offices after the so-called monetary reorganization was implemented by the Cuban government. Cienfuegos residents have approached the eight territorial municipal labor departments to inquire about the different sources of employment, reported the Agencia Cubana de Noticias (ACN) news agency. The deputy director of employment of the Provincial Department of Labor and Social Security, José Caballero, indicated that about 750 Cienfuegos residents have already been incorporated into different jobs and said that the priority is in the business sector and in the circuit of self-employed workers. He affirmed that in the province there are 400 job options to be covered in lines such as agriculture and in 123 activities of the so-called self-employed sector. Cienfuegos farmer. Photo: Pinterest. He added that interested parties may visit the website of the Ministry of Labor and Social Security to find out about job offers, the requirements to access a position and the salary in certain territories, companies, agencies and state entities, as well as in the self-employed sector. The note indicates that last year about 5,6000 Cienfuegos residents applied for employment and that 66% had access to different job offers....

Patients are discharged from the center for confirmed cases located in the Guantánamo Medical Sciences Branch. Photo: facebook.com/PVenceremos/

Cuba reports lowest number of daily COVID-19 cases in last 12 days

After twelve days with figures above 300 daily infections, and after a peak of 650 patients with COVID-19 was reported yesterday, Cuba registered 292 positive cases and three deaths from the pandemic this Sunday. According to the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) authorities, the deceased are from the provinces of Santiago de Cuba and Ciego de Ávila, and their evolution is described in today’s report; although the data of one of them stands out, a 72-year-old man who was diagnosed during the screenings. Now, the fatality rate on the island stands at 0.94% and the death toll rises to 173. Of these, 27 have been reported so far in January, a period that in terms of new infections is about to double the number in December, the worst month in this aspect since the first cases were reported on the island. https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1351188802899996676?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1351188802899996676%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-identifica-la-menor-cifra-de-casos-diarios-con-covid-19-en-los-ultimos-12-dias%2F Most of today’s 292 positive cases were autochthonous (274): 266 were due to contacts of confirmed cases, 18 had the source of infection abroad and in eight individuals the source of the contagion is not specified. By provinces, the alarming figures come from the country’s easternmost region, because Guantánamo reported 103 people, all autochthonous cases and mostly contacts...

Women workers offer disinfectant gel to tourists upon arrival at a hotel, on December 2, 2020, in Cayo Coco. Photo: EFE/Ernesto Mastrascusa/Archive.

Cuba updates COVID-19 health protocol for tourists

The Cuban Ministry of Tourism (MINTUR) updated the sanitary protocol to reduce the chances of contagion with COVID-19 and continue that sector’s operations in the island’s main destinations, the state media reported this Saturday. International travelers must have a negative PCR test, carried out 72 hours before arrival in Cuba, according to Prensa Latina news agency, which cited the measures disclosed on the MINTUR website. https://twitter.com/MinturCuba/status/1350180071009619975?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1350180071009619975%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-actualiza-el-protocolo-sanitario-para-turistas-por-la-covid-19%2F Upon arrival on the island, tourists will undergo a diagnostic test as has been happening so far. Travelers who test positive will be transferred to a hospital, if they have symptoms of the disease, while asymptomatic and suspects will go to a hotel with hospital conditions. Likewise, the requirement of an insurance policy that covers COVID-19 is maintained, and that international visitors will be able to buy at airports for 30 USD or its equivalent in another freely convertible currency, the source indicated. Cuba will also offer the possibility of performing PCR tests to those who need it to travel to destinations that require it, for a price of 30 USD. The new health regulations approved by the Cuban authorities include the mandatory use of masks in hotels, which will only accommodate 60% of...

Cuban and U.S. flags on the facade of the La Moneda Cubana Restaurant in Havana. Photo: Yamil Lage/AFP/Getty Images.

United States Agricultural Coalition with Cuba asks Biden to resume policies favorable to bilateral development

The United States Agricultural Coalition for Cuba (USACC) asked President-elect Joe Biden to resume the policies that develop relations between the agricultural sector of both countries, reported Cubadebate. According to the source, the petition, dated January 14, states that the sanctions harm the Cuban people and that lifting them can contribute to “important economic and humanitarian benefits.” Signed by 24 member groups of the USACC that lead the U.S. Rice Federation, the National Corn Growers Association and the American Soybean Association, the letter also proposes that farmers, companies, private organizations, NGOs and universities in the United States work with Cuban counterparts on the challenges of increasing productivity, adapting to climate change, and building solid business strategies. The document highlights the possibilities that the island’s private sector now has to import and export, as well as recalls the invitation made by the island’s government to foreign investment in private agricultural cooperatives, “which represents an opportunity for Americans to help the growth of this sector.” It also urges President Biden to make an effort to normalize bilateral relations and eliminate the embargo in its entirety. https://oncubanews.com/cuba-ee-uu/las-ventas-agricolas-a-cuba-se-debaten-entre-los-creditos-y-la-dinamica-mundial/ The Agricultural Coalition also requests that early measures be taken to restore the Cuban Assets Control...

Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Cuba reports highest number of coronavirus infections since the start of pandemic*

Cuba confirmed the highest number of coronavirus infections since the pandemic began on the island: 650 people with the disease. With that number, 18,151 COVID-19 cases have already been confirmed since March 2020, when the first coronavirus patients became known. Dr. Francisco Durán García, national director of Epidemiology of the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP), lamented the death of four patients, which increases the death toll to 166. To date, the health authorities have reported 18,151 people confirmed with the disease and more than one million samples analyzed to detect the coronavirus. https://youtu.be/g6Oocmoaj_A The provinces with the highest number of infections are Guantánamo and Havana, with 206 and 153, respectively. Forty-six patients are in intensive care, eleven in critical condition, including one child, and 35 in serious condition. One child is reported in critical condition and four in serious condition. These figures mark the considerable increase in the pandemic in Cuba after months under control. The authorities have indicated that most of the cases are due to violations of the travelers’ health protocols and the mismanagement of the officials in charge of enforcing health measures. The increase in infections has forced several provinces to return to the phases of limited...

Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

With 40 patients in intensive care, Cuba surpasses 17,000 coronavirus infections

Two deaths, an increase in infections, more confirmed active cases, a growth in hospitalized patients and a record number in intensive care is the balance that the SARS-CoV-2 virus has left in Cuba this Thursday, according to this Friday’s report by the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) broadcasts this Friday. The ICUs, although “not over flooded,” as explained yesterday by Dr. Francisco Durán, report the highest number of patients since March: 40 in nine provinces. Of them, 13 are in critical condition and 27 in serious condition. In addition, five of those who remain in intensive care have not reached the age of 18, an age group that increases to a total of 1,807 cases. Only in the last 24 hours, 73 children under 20 years of age were reported, a group that has 341 active cases. Until midnight on Thursday, 7,647 people were under surveillance in hospitals or health centers created for patients suffering from the new coronavirus; 2,776 were suspects and confirmed active cases, in addition, amounted to the total number of 3,960. https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1350097058124980229?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1350097058124980229%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcon-40-pacientes-en-cuidados-intensivos-cuba-supera-los-17000-contagios-por-coronavirus%2F With the two deaths registered on the day, both in Santiago de Cuba, the death toll from the pandemic stands at 162 fatalities. The...

Photo: @CIGBCuba/Twitter.

A new diagnostic kit and more vaccine projects, contributions of Cuban science against COVID-19

A diagnostic kit for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 and new vaccine candidates more resistant to possible mutations of the coronavirus, are among the most recent contributions and results of Cuban science in the face of the pandemic, the official media reported. In addition, a third prototype of a Cuban lung ventilator was also presented, “an initiative that seeks to avoid the collapse of intensive care services in the absence of these equipment,” according to Prensa Latina (PL) news agency. The new diagnostic kit, which is used for the magnetic extraction of RNA from the virus with nanotechnology, was presented at the meeting that Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel systematically holds with scientists and experts from the island working on projects and research related to COVID -19. “It is the laboratory reagent that allows the extraction of genetic material, which is an essential step in the process of determination of PCR tests,” explained at the meeting Dr. Angelina Díaz, director of the Center for Advanced Studies, quoted by Granma newspaper. The specialist stated that the diagnostic kit was validated by the Pedro Kourí Institute of Tropical Medicine, has a 100% concordance with imported kits, does not require a cold chain and complies...

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla at a press conference in Havana. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez/Archive.

Cuba rejects new U.S. sanction, now from the Department of Commerce

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla rejected the measure announced yesterday by the Bureau of Industry and Security of the U.S. Department of Commerce, which imposed “new controls on any American technology and specific activities of U.S. persons” that may be linked to “foreign military-intelligence.” On his Twitter account, the Cuban foreign minister rejected the announcement, which he linked to the latest U.S. measures against the island, defining them as “politically motivated,” which, in this case, directly involve the Department of Military Intelligence (DIM) and the Department of Military Counterintelligence (CIM). https://twitter.com/BrunoRguezP/status/1349841998929342464?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1349841998929342464%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba-ee-uu%2Fcuba-rechaza-nueva-sancion-de-estados-unidos-ahora-desde-el-departamento-de-comercio%2F According to the Department of Commerce website, “the new controls prevent U.S. persons from supporting certain foreign military-intelligence services, such as through brokering the sale of foreign-origin items or providing maintenance, repair, or overhaul services.” The statement adds a quote from Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who was categorical in saying: “We cannot allow the foreign military-intelligence organizations of our adversaries in China, Cuba, Russia, Venezuela, Iran, and other terrorist-supporting nations to benefit from U.S. technology or U.S. services to support their destabilizing activities.” https://oncubanews.com/en/cuba-usa/what-is-ofac-and-what-does-ofac-do/ For the Cuban foreign minister, each coercive measure of the U.S. government against the island “is especially aimed at strangling the Cuban economy and...

People in Havana, during the outbreak of coronavirus in early January 2021. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Cuba with more than 3,600 active cases and reaches 160 deaths from coronavirus

This Wednesday, COVID-19 claimed two new fatalities in Cuba, both women and octogenarians. With them, the fatality on the island is 0.9% and the total number of deaths is 160. One of the deceased was 83 years old, a resident in the main municipality of Santiago de Cuba. The other, 87, lived in the main municipality of Camagüey. A total of 14 people have lost their lives to the pandemic this month, the fourth deadliest to date. In addition, Dr. Francisco Durán has explained, and the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) informed in its corresponding report, that there is another record of active cases, 3,660 in a day where the new infections reported from all the provinces of the country totaled 505. https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1349734757752475649?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1349734757752475649%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-sobrepasa-los-3600-casos-activos-y-suma-160-fallecidos-por-coronavirus%2F Most were a consequence of autochthonous transmission, which in general is the cause this time of 472 positive cases. In short, of the 505 new cases, 435 were contacts of confirmed cases, 33 had the source of infection abroad and in 37 individuals the source of infection is not specified. Today, 52.3% of all SARS-CoV-2 virus carriers were asymptomatic at the time of diagnosis. The territory with the highest number of patients was Havana, with 175 positive...

Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Cuba: more than 16,000 COVID-19 infections after the 550 cases reported today

COVID-19 yesterday again established another record of infections in Cuba, when the number of cases diagnosed with the disease amounted to 550, mostly autochthonous (524) distributed in 14 provinces and the Isla de la Juventud Space Municipality. According to the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) authorities, Santiago de Cuba leads the record, with 154 positive cases, among those imported and autochthonous diagnosed on January 12, followed by Havana (126), Matanzas (54), Guantánamo (42) and Villa Clara (40). https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1349371085297487875?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1349371085297487875%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-contagios-por-covid-19-superan-los-16000-tras-los-550-casos-reportados-hoy%2F Regarding incidence rates, Guantánamo remains at the top of the list, with 78.18 per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Matanzas (58.34), Havana (46.09) and Santiago (49.54). In addition, in the report issued today by the MINSAP, three deaths were registered, with which the pandemic now leaves 158 fatalities on the island and the lethality rate is 0.99%. The three deaths correspond to two women; a 60-year-old resident in Habana del Este and a 72-year-old from the San Juan y Martínez municipality, Pinar del Rio; and a 72-year-old man, resident in the main municipality of Pinar del Río. The complexity of the situation is also evident in the increase in confirmed active cases, whose record is likewise the highest in ten months of confrontation...

Three children greet each other before entering their school. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez/Archive.

Guantánamo closes schools due to COVID-19 outbreak

Around 80 schools in the province of Guantánamo, Cuba’s easternmost province, will temporarily close their doors due to the rebound in COVID-19 cases in that territory. According to the Department of Education in Guantánamo, 82 educational institutions are suspending their teaching activities, of the 779 open in the province, the local newspaper Venceremos reported this Tuesday. The most affected municipality is the provincial capital―currently in the autochthonous transmission phase of the disease―where 70 of its 106 schools have recessed since Monday, a measure that affects 30,850 students, the source noted. For its part, in Niceto Pérez―also in the autochthonous transmission phase―seven schools located in the La Yaya and Vilorio people’s councils closed, while the 46 remaining schools located in that municipality will maintain their functions for the time being. The city of Guantánamo also saw the closure of five provincial centers, in which students from various municipalities study, while the departure of students from eight boarding schools, four of them provincial and the same number in Niceto Pérez, was ordered, Venceremos said, according to which eight day-care centers and six semi-boarding schools were reorganized in the provincial capital and classes are maintained in 13 primary schools and a mixed center...

Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Havana homes, main places to get COVID-19 in the province

Havana homes are today the main contagion space for COVID-19 in the province. According to Major General (r) Ramón Pardo Guerra, chief of the National Civil Defense General Staff, more than 80% of the confirmed cases in recent weeks are international travelers and their local contacts. The president of the Provincial Defense Council, Luis Antonio Torres Civil, said in a meeting that the authorities will be much stricter in the application of tax mechanisms and in the legal treatment of cases. At the same time, he stressed the importance of emphasizing family responsibility in order to make the home the safe place it was at other times during the pandemic, especially for minors. At the meeting it was announced that the State Sanitary Inspection has been visiting travelers, and that today about 12 fines were applied based on Decree 14/2020 for breach of the protocols. The delay in delivering the results of the PCR tests is one of the problems that generates the highest level of complaints in the population. https://youtu.be/qJhkPD95jv0 In Havana, around 13,000 people are currently in isolation at home. Carlos Alberto Martínez Blanco, provincial director of public health, highlighted that 95 of the positive autochthonous cases are...

People on a street in Havana. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Coronavirus in Cuba: 487 new infections, two deaths and 3,057 active cases

The daily infections from the SARS-CoV-2 virus in Cuba have again broken the records with the diagnosis yesterday of 487 cases distributed in almost all the country’s provinces, although Havana accounts for 40% of the positive cases reported by the Ministry of Health Public (MINSAP). Just the capital registered 195 people diagnosed with an autochthonous or imported source of infection, according to the MINSAP, which warned of the no less worrying situation in provinces such as Matanzas (66 cases), Santiago de Cuba (44), Holguín (39) and Guantanamo (26). https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1349008622639063044?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1349008622639063044%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcoronavirus-en-cuba-487-nuevos-contagios-dos-muertes-y-3057-activos%2F The highest incidence rate, however, is in the eastern province of Guantánamo, with 70.66 per 100,000 inhabitants. Matanzas, Havana and Santiago de Cuba follow in complexity. Meanwhile, the country’s incidence rate is 26.6. The confirmed active patients have also broken records with the 3,057 reported as of midnight on Monday, with more than 6,000 people were admitted to hospitals or specialized centers for the care of COVID-19 patients. There were 25 people in ICUs, eight in critical condition and 17 in serious condition. To top it off, two individuals died and the death toll is now 155, leaving the island with a fatality rate of 1%, a low percentage compared to...

Photo: Agencia Cubana de Noticias (ACN).

COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial advances in Santiago de Cuba

The clinical trial of the Cuban Abdala COVID-19 vaccine candidate in the eastern province of Santiago de Cuba―one of the most affected by the current outbreak of the disease on the island―is progressing successfully, according to authorities and the official media. So far, “few adverse reactions and an adequate safety profile” have been detected for this potential vaccine, also known as CIGB 66, developed by the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB) in Havana, according to the Agencia Cubana de Noticias (ACN) news agency. The study of this vaccine candidate, one of the four produced in Cuba that are already in a clinical trial, “is close to the conclusion of its first phase and so far the participants only manifest discomfort in the area of ​​administration of the immunogen,” the agency pointed out, which noted that 132 volunteers have participated in it, from the Oriente Pharmaceutical Laboratory and the Medicines Marketing Enterprise. The trial is being carried out at the Saturnino Lora Provincial Hospital, whose director, Dr. Rafael Suárez, told the ACN that the second phase of the trial should begin at the end of January or the beginning of February, “depending on the decisions of the governing bodies...

Private seller of sweets in Havana. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Cuba with record of 431 new cases of coronavirus and more than 15,000 since March

The Cuban health authorities reported this Monday a new record of 431 new infections of coronavirus in one day, with which the number of cases detected on the island since the beginning of the pandemic exceeded 15,000 (15,007). In addition, at the close of yesterday there were two new deaths from COVID-19 and 159 discharges, with which the death toll from the disease already stands at 153 and those recovered amounted to 12,022 in the Caribbean country. This Monday, 5,715 people were hospitalized due to the coronavirus, 1,948 of them under surveillance, 965 suspects and 2,802 confirmed, the highest number of active cases to date on the island. Of the latter, 2,778 have a stable clinical condition, while 24 are in ICUs: nine in critical condition and 15 in serious condition, according to the most recent report from the Cuban Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP). https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1348645682459140097?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1348645682459140097%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-con-record-de-431-nuevos-casos-de-coronavirus-y-sobrepasa-los-15-000-desde-marzo%2F As for the new cases, 421 correspond to Cubans and 10 are foreigners. The autochthonous cases established a record of 395―271 of them are contacts of previously confirmed cases―, while the imported ones were only 36 this time. However, according to Dr. Francisco Durán, national director of Epidemiology of the MINSAP, 285 of the...

Photo: EFE/Yander Zamora/Archive.

Cuba: requirement of negative PCR for foreign travelers takes effect

Starting yesterday, January 10, the Cuban authorities require that travelers from abroad present a negative PCR test for COVID-19, carried out by a certified laboratory in the country of origin. The test must have been carried out within a maximum of 72 hours prior to arrival in the national territory. Prensa Latina, alluding to the information published by the website of the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP), recalls that tourists willing to stay in hotels, rental houses or hostels, will have a PCR at their entrance and will remain in isolation until they know the result. https://oncubanews.com/en/cuba/coronavirus-infections-continue-to-rise-in-cuba-and-set-new-records/ Meanwhile, travelers residing in Cuba or visiting Cubans will be confined in the house, whose address they have registered, until they know the negative result of a second PCR carried out on the fifth day of arrival. The measure was announced on December 24 and responds to the rebound in coronavirus infections on the island after the opening of the airports between October and November 2020. Many of the new positive cases have had the source of infection abroad or have been associated with travelers, according to Dr. Francisco Durán in his daily appearance to report on the existing epidemiological situation. https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1346540601559416834?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1346540601559416834%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-en-vigor-exigencia-de-pcr-negativo-a-viajeros-del-exterior%2F Yesterday,...

Photo: @FinlayInstituto/Twitter.

Cuba and Iran alliance on COVID-19 vaccine

Cuba and Iran signed a bilateral agreement this Friday that establishes an alliance in the work for the development of a COVID-19 vaccine. The agreement was signed by the Finlay Vaccine Institute, belonging to the Cuban state group BioCubaFarma, and the Iranian Pasteur Institute “to complement clinical evidence of the Soberana 02 vaccine candidate,” the island’s media reported. A tweet from the Finlay Institute highlighted that this synergy “will allow faster progress in immunization against COVID-19 in both countries,” while the also Cuban Center for Molecular Immunology (CIM) highlighted that “the complementing of scientific-technological capabilities is vital to promote the accelerated development of effective therapies.” https://twitter.com/FinlayInstituto/status/1347699133067489280?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1347699133067489280%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-e-iran-acuerdan-alianza-sobre-vacuna-contra-la-covid-19%2F Meanwhile, BioCubaFarma stressed that Iran’s Pasteur Institute “has a long history of collaboration” with Cuban scientific institutions and that the new agreement “strengthens the ties of friendship” between the two nations. https://twitter.com/BioCubaFarma/status/1347690804228337674?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1347690804228337674%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-e-iran-acuerdan-alianza-sobre-vacuna-contra-la-covid-19%2F On his part, the spokesman for the Iranian committee to combat COVID-19, Kianush Jahanpur, stressed this Saturday that the agreement is part of his country’s “strategic alliance” with Cuba to develop a vaccine against the new coronavirus. “A strategic alliance for both Iran and Cuba. Together we will move faster,” Jahanpur wrote on his Twitter account, in which he reiterated the “long...

Zanja Street, in Havana. December 2020. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Coronavirus: Cuba with 388 new infections, most of them autochthonous

Cuba closes a week in which each day surpassed the previous one in terms of new infections by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. In fact, on Saturday the health authorities identified 388 new cases while the confirmed active ones rose to 2,534. According to the report issued today by the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP), at the end of January 9 there had also been three deaths from COVID-19 in the country’s central and the eastern regions. https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1348284240979492866?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1348284240979492866%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcoronavirus-cuba-con-388-nuevos-contagios-la-mayoria-autoctonos%2F A 92-year-old woman, resident in the municipality of Holguín; a 76-year-old man living in the municipality of Santiago de Cuba; and another 83-year-old woman living in Jovellanos, Matanzas, were the deceased, with whom the number of fatalities that the pandemic has left on the island rises to 151. In the case of new infections, most of them were contacts of confirmed cases: 322; meanwhile, the number of imported cases decreased to 35 and that of individuals without a precise source of infection increased to 31. The territories with the most alarming figures are Santiago de Cuba (89 cases), Havana (85), Guantánamo (54), Matanzas (45) and Artemisa (24), although in general all provinces reported infections. The hospitalizations reported until midnight also experienced a rise: 5,181...

Cuba-United States in 2020

The Trump administration has reversed virtually all of Obama’s policies toward Cuba. Through executive orders, Obama expanded trips to Cuba; Trump canceled people-to-people licenses, cultural exchanges, and banned U.S. residents from staying in hotels run by the military. Obama did not put limits on remittances; Trump first limited them and then made it almost impossible for Cuban Americans to send money to their family members. Obama granted licenses to U.S. companies to operate in Cuba; Trump eliminated them. Obama restored full diplomatic relations and staffed the embassy and consulate in Havana; Trump reduced staff to a minimum and closed the consulate, affecting immigration services and family reunification for Cubans. Flights January 10: The Department of Transportation announced that all charter flights to Cuba from the United States would be suspended “until further notice.” As stated in a statement by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, citing the existence of a letter to the Secretary of Transportation, Elaine L. Chao, the objective is to “reinforce the impact of the administration’s policy of putting economic pressure on the Cuban regime” in areas such as human rights and fundamental freedoms due to Cuban support for the government of Venezuela. Remittances February 27: Western Union...

People queue at a state bakery in Havana. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Coronavirus infections continue to rise in Cuba and set new records

Infections with the SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus continue on the rise in Cuba, after 365 new cases were reported at the close of this Friday, a new daily record in the country. With this, the number of positive cases detected exceeded 14,000 (14,188) since the beginning of the pandemic, while active cases in one day reached 2,332, also negative marks for the island. In addition, yesterday no deaths from COVID-19 were reported and 151 patients were discharged in Cuba, with which the number of fatalities remained at 148 and the number of recovered rose to 11,682, 82.3 % of positive cases to date. There are already 4,724 people hospitalized for the disease, of them 1,511 suspects and 881 under surveillance, in addition to confirmed patients. Of the latter, 2,316 present a stable clinical evolution, while six are in critical condition and 10 in serious condition, as reported this Saturday by Dr. Francisco Durán, national director of Epidemiology of the Cuban Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP). https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1347922664472641536?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1347922664472641536%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcontagios-de-coronavirus-siguen-en-alza-en-cuba-y-marcan-nuevos-records%2F The 365 cases detected in the last day―352 Cubans and 13 foreigners―were the result of the study of 13,592 samples. A total of 321 are autochthonous; 269 were contacts of already confirmed cases and 52 had...

Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Another COVID-19 record in Cuba with 344 new infections reported today

The coronavirus infections reported in January by the Cuban Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) are “keeping tense” the population and local governments, as explained by Dr. Francisco Durán during his appearance on Cuban television, from where he reported that just in the last 24 hours, 344 new cases had been registered. This figure, the highest since March, conveys the same concern as that of confirmed cases, a statistic that also registers a peak since the disease was identified on the island, with 2,118 active patients registered this Thursday. https://twitter.com/MINSAPCuba/status/1347558937839742977?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1347558937839742977%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fla-covid-19-marca-otro-record-en-cuba-con-los-344-nuevos-contagios-informados-hoy%2F Of the total number of infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus this day, 275 were autochthonous and 69 imported, and the territories that reported the highest number of cases were Havana (91), Santiago de Cuba (45), Guantánamo (36 ), Matanzas (34), Pinar del Río (26), Villa Clara (22) and Holguín (17), although in general 15 provinces reported patients due to autochthonous transmission or due to imported cases. The 69 patients with a source of infection abroad came from the United States, Haiti, Mexico, Canada, Colombia and Russia. Regarding the place of origin of the patients, of the total infections, 334 correspond to Cubans and 10 to foreigners, with Russian, Canadian, Colombian, German,...

Supporters of Donald Trump seek to forcibly cross a police fence surrounding the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, January 6, 2021. Photo: Julio Cortez/AP.

Cuban government rejects violent acts in U.S. Congress

The Cuban government rejected this Thursday the violent acts that occurred this Wednesday in the U.S. Congress, during the irruption into the legislative headquarters of a crowd of supporters of President Donald Trump at a time when Congress had to certify the electoral victory of Democrat Joe Biden. The island’s president, Miguel Díaz-Canel, lamented the deaths that occurred during these events, which shocked international public opinion, and condemned the attack by pro-Trump protesters on the Washington Capitol. “We regret the loss of human life and we repudiate the violent acts, the attack on Congress and the supremacist expressions that occurred yesterday in Washington DC,” the president wrote on his Twitter account. https://twitter.com/DiazCanelB/status/1347268048156323840?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1347268048156323840%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba-ee-uu%2Fgobierno-cubano-rechaza-actos-violentos-en-el-congreso-de-eeuu%2F Hours earlier, Díaz-Canel had reacted to the riots in the legislative headquarters with a fragment of a text about the United States written in 1894 by Cuban pro-independence hero José Martí. “But he does not predict, but certifies, he who observes how in the United States, instead of uniting in the causes of union, divide; instead of solving the problems of humanity, they are reproduced,” the president tweeted, citing Martí’s article entitled “La verdad sobre los EE.UU.” https://twitter.com/DiazCanelB/status/1347161422946586632?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1347161422946586632%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba-ee-uu%2Fgobierno-cubano-rechaza-actos-violentos-en-el-congreso-de-eeuu%2F In both cases, the president accompanied what he wrote with...

Application of Nasalferon, nasal version of Interferon alfa 2-b, as a preventive treatment against COVID-19. Photo: ACN/Archive.

Two municipalities of Havana will apply Nasalferón to travelers and cohabitants

The health authorities of the Havana municipalities of Boyeros and Diez de Octubre started applying Nasalferón to travelers and their cohabitants as of yesterday, January 7, as was announced in the Provincial Defense Council (CDP) of Havana. The news, published by Radio COCO station on its website and amplified by the Agencia Cubana de Noticias news agency, explains that one drop will be applied nasally, in the morning and another at night, for a period of between five and 10 days. Cohabitants must start treatment three days before the traveler’s arrival to their home. Ileana Morales Suárez, director of science and technological innovation of the Ministry of Public Health, specified at the meeting that the use of this drug will soon be extended to the rest of the province. https://oncubanews.com/en/cuba/nasal-interferon-to-be-administered-to-all-health-workers-in-ciego-de-avila/ The source recalls that Nasalferón is an immunoprotective derived from Cuban interferon, which has been used with 93 percent effectiveness in medical personnel in the red zone of hospitals where the pandemic is being fought, and in health collaborators.  According to specialists, Nasalferón, a Cuban biotechnology drug with prophylactic action,  prevents the replication of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19, and modifies the number of colonies present in the body,...

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