Passengers Aboard Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas Cruise Ship Test Negative for New Coronavirus
Four people were sent to University Hospital in Newark, NJ out of caution after the Anthem of the Seas arrived at port in Bayonne.
The ship's latest group of passengers contained a number of people who had originated in China in the time period when the new coronavirus was approaching outbreak status. Based on observations of how the disease develops, medical professionals are using a 14-day observation period, after which patients are effectively cleared if they do not develop symptoms. Some passengers on the ship were still within this span of time, so they were held in quarantine, since it's still unknown whether the virus can be transmitted before patients develop symptoms.
After passengers were screened, four were taken to a local hospital for further testing, with two showing flu-like symptoms. In guidance from the CDC, patients who have traveled to China or had contact with a person who traveled to China in the past 14 days and are now showing flu-like symptoms should be put under observation and have samples sent to the CDC to confirm whether they have the new coronavirus or the more common seasonal flu.
In a short notice on their website, Royal Caribbean notes that the four patients will be tested by the CDC and that the ship has been cleared to leave for its next voyage, scheduled to leave New York en route to the Bahamas, but will be delayed until Monday, February 10th while the CDC test results are confirmed. However, the cruise company will be prohibiting passengers from boarding who hold a Chinese, Hong Kong or Macau passport, have traveled to those areas, or have had close contact with someone who has traveled to those areas in the last 15 days. The ban will apply to all Royal Caribbean ships, not just the Anthem of the Seas.
Sunday, February 9th at 10 AM 📎
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