Guantánamo, 12 Mar (ACN) Classes and extracurricular activities in the 774 schools in Guantánamo’s general education system today are taking extreme health measures to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which caused Covid-19, a dangerous global pandemic that has spread to more than 100 countries, including Cuba.
In front of her classroom at the Conrado Benítez Semi-boarding School -one of the largest enrolment in the province-, teacher Ana Labañino, who has been a teacher for four decades, insists to her students on the importance of frequent hand washing with soap and water, and shows them how to cover their mouths and noses with a bent elbow or a tissue when they cough or sneeze.
Mirelis Boulet Maletá, director of the Meñique Day Care Center, is equally committed to the current context. She practices correct hand hygiene with her little pupils, a routine now as crucial as avoiding the greeting through a kiss, something that the students of the 14 de Junio Special School are also reflecting on today, orally and in sign language.
Because of the seriousness of the new global pandemic, awareness of the issue is being raised both in the morning and in classes of all kinds and in the recess of schools in the 10 municipalities of Guantánamo, where it is now a vital rule not to touch one’s eyes, nose and mouth without first cleaning them – since they are ports of entry for the contagious virus – and to avoid attendance by those who present flu symptoms.
Barbara Lisette Iribar, head of the department that covers the area of school health at the Provincial Directorate of Education, told the ACN that since the rapid spread of Covid-19 throughout the world, the Guantanamo education sector – in accordance with the national strategy and with the support of health professionals – has trained one hundred percent of its staff in preventive issues.
Our guild,” he said, “participates actively in this first stage of confronting the epidemic, which is prevention, and has developed a system of measures to act within schools, which includes total sanitation and daily surveys coordinated with Public Health, in addition to the continuous instruction of students and parents about the behaviors to be followed.
In a situation as delicate as the one we now face in the world, in Cuba, whose Public Health is internationally recognized, the Ministry of Education has as its main task, as do all other institutions, to prevent the spread of the scourge and control it if it arises, Ena Elsa Velázquez, head of the branch, stressed during a recent working visit to Guantánamo.
The teacher’s systematic preparation for epidemiological phenomena,” said Velázquez, “dates back to previous contingencies, such as those caused by influenza A (H1N1) and dengue, knowledge that will now help us to overcome the new threat, for which very few countries are prepared like Cuba, due to its inclusive health system.
Dr. Roilder Romero, Provincial Director of Health, said in an interview that his staff is trained and is monitored in the area, systematically, Acute Respiratory Infections, for which is key epidemiological surveillance, which is strengthened both in schools and in the neighborhoods, homes for mothers and the elderly, and workplaces.
Prevention is the best antidote to combat the new coronavirus,” he said, “and the battle requires the conscious participation of everyone.
(Taken from ACN in Spanish)