Cyprus Mail

Pournara staff doing all they can to contain scabies outbreak, minister says

Photo: Christos Theodorides

Interior Minister Nicos Nouris said Thursday workers at Pournara camp were doing everything they could to contain a scabies outbreak at the facility, amid criticism from opposition Akel that hygiene guidelines were not being met at refugee centres.

Nouris compared the scabies outbreak to coronavirus saying the only way to contain the infestation was through isolating the camp.

Through the correct management of the migrant centres and the work of the doctors there had not been any Covid-19 cases reported at refugee facilities, he said.

Commenting in the criticism from Akel, Nouris said: “I wonder who they are trying to blame for the scabies outbreak?”

He added the workers at the camp were doing everything they could to contain the scabies outbreak.

On Wednesday, Akel said the outbreak showed how hygiene guidelines were not being followed at refugee centres.

Earlier in the week, the cabinet declared the Pournara migrant centre in Kokkinotrimithia as an infectious area.

In a brief statement, the government said that the minister of health informed them that around 30 people at Pournara had been infected. They had displayed symptoms such as itching and rashes, were given medication and have been isolated.

Scabies occurs in places where many people live together, the health ministry said.

Although the disease is contagious through physical contact or the use of common objects, its transmission can be limited and treatment given in a timely manner. Scabies is generally spread by skin-to-skin touching but can be caught from sharing clothes, towels, or bedding.

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