Cholera Warning for Cuba Issued by USA

The US Interests Section building in Havana. Photo: Raquel Perez

HAVANA TIMES — The US Interests Section (USIS) in Havana has issued an alert to US citizens for a possible outbreak of cholera in Cuba, reported dpa news.

“We urge you to follow public health recommendations and guidelines, such as safe food and water precautions and frequent hand washing to help prevent cholera infection.  The Cuban Ministry of Public Health is urging people to comply with sanitary measures associated with personal hygiene, water and food,” said the diplomatic mission in a message posted today on its website.

The alert dated Tuesday but released Wednesday, said that “common sources of infection” are the intake of “untreated water, food sold by street vendors, raw fish dishes (ceviche) and shellfish inadequately cooked.”

The diplomatic mission said the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an epidemiological alert, confirming that foreign visitors including an Italian, two Venezuelans and two Chileans had contracted cholera during recent trips to Cuba.

PAHO recognizes in its report that the Cuban authorities “maintain a strict and active clinical-epidemiological monitoring of acute diarrheal diseases, studying every possible case.”

As of this publication, the Cuban authorities have not issued any information on the alert, presumably to not generate an alarm that could affect tourism, one of the main economic engines of the island, generating an estimated 2.5 billion US dollars in revenue in 2011 according to official data.

The disease was eradicated on the island since 1882, in the time of the Spanish colonial rule, until earlier this year, when the Cuban Ministry of Public Health issued a report which recognized the existence of 51 cases of cholera in Havana and several cases in the eastern provinces, noted dpa.

The US maintains a travel ban on Cuba for most citizens, but Cuban-Americans are free to travel back and forth and hundreds of thousands do each year. Some other US citizens travel to Cuba under people-to-people licensing and still others travel illegally through third countries.



15 thoughts on “Cholera Warning for Cuba Issued by USA

  • August 28, 2013 at 12:39 am

    I am not the one grasping at any straws, You are.

    It clear, from the article I linked to that the government indeed “has allowed travelers to enter including foreigners to enter areas that posed a significant health risk”.

    From the article I quoted:
    “Havana reported that a total of 12 foreign tourists and 151 Cubans have come down with cholera in recent months – though Gómez says his hospital ward alone had six to 15 foreigners on every one of the six days that he spent there.”

    This clearly confirms that cholera is widespread and that even Cuba recent “candor” on the disease is grossly under-reporting the extent of the epidemic.

    “The Havana report on cholera, the second in August alone, seemed to hint at a growing transparency by Cuban officials who previously kept quiet about the disease in a bid to avoid damaging the island’s $2.5 billion-a-year tourism industry, experts said.”

    In short: experts confirm what I said, Dan Christensen.

    Paho confirmed tourists have indeed been exposed: three from Italy, two each from Germany, Spain, Chile and Venezuela and one from the Netherlands are already known for certain.

    Cuba has issued a cholera warning:
    “Cuba issues alert on cholera outbreak”, 26 August, 2013,

    For more see:

  • August 27, 2013 at 8:17 am

    Desperately grasping at straws as always, I see.

    No one, not the US Interests Section in Havana, not the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, and not the Canadian government is advising travelers to avoid travel to Cuba or to any part of it. At most, they are advising travelers to take some simple precautions that, I would think, most regular travelers to the tropics would instinctively follow at all times (see above).

    The independent, US-based CDC still has no travel notice in effect for Cuba for cholera, or for any other reason.

    But even for the Dominican Republic and Haiti, where thousands have died of cholera, the CDC has travel notices warning of ongoing cholera outbreaks there, but does NOT advise travelers to avoid even these countries or any parts of them, but simply to “practice usual precautions.”

    Dominican Republic:


    So, the CDC does not see an ongoing cholera outbreak in these two countries as a significant enough health risk to advise against travel to these countries or any part of them. Once again, we see what a truly desperate liar you are, my friend. When will you learn?

  • August 27, 2013 at 3:00 am

    There can be no doubt that the government has allowed travelers to enter including foreigners to enter areas that posed a significant health risk.

    Posted on Monday, 08.26.13
    “Cuba reports more cholera among foreign visitors “,

    Thank you for again showing your utter disregard for the Cuban people that live in the areas that pose a significant health risk.

  • August 26, 2013 at 11:43 am

    What you call “oppression” is what I call a legitimate response to relentless US aggression for over half a century.

    End the criminal US embargo and the massive US bankrolling of subversion on the island and there would be no need to so closely monitor so-called “dissidents.” (To paraphrase former USINT chief, Jonanthan Farrar’s top secret report, these “dissidents” for the most part are nothing more than money-grubbing losers who couldn’t get elected dog-catchers! See WikiLeaks.)

    And while complaining seems to be something of a national sport in Cuba, in one national vote after another, Cubans have overwhelmingly endorsed the government, its institutions and its aggressive stance on US imperialism.

    Elections in Cuba are as democratic as anywhere else, perhaps more so since every national vote amounts to a referendum on the Revolutionary state itself. Given a chance to register a secret protest vote, less than 5% chose to do so in national elections held earlier this year.

    (See my previous postings on these topics at Disqus.)

  • August 26, 2013 at 9:10 am

    I do not rationalize the US policy or excuse their crimes against Cuba. I do point out that the brutal Castro dictatorship is not the socialist utopia you imagine. The wickedness of the US foreign policy does not make Cuba any nicer.

    It is you who rationalize the oppression of the Cuban people by the totalitarian state by blaming the US for everything.

  • August 26, 2013 at 12:17 am

    You accuse DC 1945 of propaganda, then counter with THAT? Irony at it’s finest folks.

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