Question: Do you think that the outbreak is going to effect me traveling to Cuba next Tuesday? Are they going to be letting people from the UK in?? Obviously I’m extremely worried about this so your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
Answer: As soon as Cuba became aware, on Monday April 27th, of an outbreak of swine fever in other countries, the Cuban Public Health Ministry immediately began to take the necessary measures to minimize the possibilities of this disease entering Cuba.
Cuban health officials are also closely following the news from international health agencies and health authorities especially in the United States and Mexico, where the outbreak has been most serious, followed by Canada and some European countries already reporting the first cases of the virus in their territories.
As of Tuesday April 28th, not a single case of swine fever has so far been reported in Cuba, nor have any patients been hospitalized who are suspected of having the disease.
Among the package of preventive measures taken by Cuba – which to date has been successful in preventing an avian influenza epidemic from entering the country – is the mobilization of measures in the fields of clinical-epidemiological monitoring and diagnosis, risk reduction and treatment capabilities for confronting an epidemic should it enter the country.
Information and orientations are also being provided to the population relating to hygiene in both the home and workplace.
The Cuban Ministry of Public health, in conjunction with the Institute of Civil Aeronautics, the Tourism Ministry, Customs, Immigration, and the Veterinary Institute, have been taking a series of measures of rigorous control at ports and airports with aircraft and ships and their passengers, taking into account that this could be a way of access for swine fever to the enter the country. The Public Health Ministry is also in coordination with National Civil Defense structures. In short, authorities report that Cuba has the necessary material and human resources to deal with a potential outbreak.
Whereas initially flights form and to Mexico were being limited as far as possible, on Tuesday morning April 28th, Cuba decided to implement a 48-hour suspension of flights to and from Mexico as a precaution against the spread of swine fever. If necessary, further steps to restrict Mexico travel will be taken.
To date, there has been no indications that travel from and to other countries will be restricted, but travelers would be well advised to keep abreast of the situation, and to check with the Cuban Embassy in their respective countries close to the time of departure.