Cruise ships still cruising as cases rise and criticism escalates


Most major cruise lines do not publicly announce the number of coronavirus cases aboard their ships, but they are required to submit daily figures to the CDC Currently, the agency is monitoring more than 90 cruise ships, due to of reported cases that have reached the agency’s threshold for investigation. (An investigation is undertaken when a certain number of cases are reported among a percentage of passengers.)

Carnival denied that the number of infected crews reached 100 on Mr. Suphan’s navigation, but did not disclose the total number of people who tested positive. On December 28, when the cruise was refused entry into port, the Jalisco State Department of Health said 69 cases had been detected among the ship’s 1,450 crew members. That day, Christine Duffy, the president of the Carnival, called the ship and informed the guests of the situation. Passengers said she had not given updated figures for the positive cases, which many found concerning.

Chris Chiames, director of communications for Carnival, said the company takes its public health responsibility “very seriously” and has implemented protocols that exceed CDC guidelines since the restart of operations in the United States. United in June.

“The vast majority of crew members who test positive are asymptomatic and detected via the randomized testing protocol, and they and their close contacts are placed in isolation or quarantine,” Chiames said. “None required intensive medical attention or hospitalization, and we have also moved most of the ship’s crew to complete their isolation or quarantine.”

Carnival declined to comment on its policies for reporting daily cases to passengers aboard its ships, but Chiames said “the additional complications caused by the fast-spreading Omicron variant will require us to assess how to communicate in the future.” .

For many, the idea of ​​testing positive for the coronavirus on a cruise ship evokes the horrors of major epidemics at the start of the pandemic, when thousands of people were confined to their rooms for endless days during the pandemic.

The health and safety protocols that allowed U.S. cruise ships to restart operations in June have helped cruise lines contain the virus and avoid large outbreaks, and so far, much of the small percentage of passengers who tested positive during the crossings were satisfied with the handling of their cases. Some even received free food and champagne in their rooms and were repatriated by charter plane.