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Investigation Update - December 9, 2002

    • Investigation Update - December 9, 2002

    • During the span of October 2002 through December 2002, the Centers for Disease Control and Preventionís Vessel Sanitation Program (VSP) investigated several instances of gastrointestinal illness aboard cruise ships. VSP worked closely with cruise industry officials to identify the causes for the following are updates of investigations:
    • Holland Americaís Amsterdam;
    • Disneyís Disney Magic;
    • Carnivalís Fascination; and
    • P & O's Oceana.
    • Holland America's Amsterdam

    • The Amsterdam returned to service on December 1, and its staff has been providing daily reports to CDC. Illness reports have been well below the level of concern. As of December 9, the vessel reported that 9 of 1,190 passengers and 2 of 577 crew experienced a gastrointestinal illness. The Amsterdam returns to port on December 11. No additional follow-up is required at this time.
    • Disney's Disney Magic

    • After a week of extensive cleaning and disinfection, the Disney Magic returned to service on December 7. The Magic will be providing CDC with daily reports through the end of its current cruise.
    • Carnival's Fascination

    • Food and water samples taken from the Fascination for the cruise ending December 2, 2002 are still pending.
    • As of December 9, the vessel has completed two additional cruises. CDCís vessel sanitation staff was notified by the Fascinationís medical staff reported that for the cruise ending December 6, 13 of 2,042 passengers and 12 of 907 crew had reported gastrointestinal illness. For the cruise ending December 9, 6 of 2038 passengers and 7 of 922 crew reported ill. No other follow-up is planned by CDC.
    • P & O's Oceana

    • On December 7, CDC staff boarded the Oceana to conduct interviews with ill passengers and crew. CDC staff will also conduct an environmental assessment and will expedite the collection of stool specimens for shipment back to CDC. As of December 9, the vesselís medical staff notified CDC that 197 of 1,859 passengers and 15 of 868 crew had reported to the shipís infirmary with gastrointestinal illness. All of the passengers originated in the United Kingdom and flew on chartered aircraft to Ft. Lauderdale, the point of embarkation. Most of the ill passengers were reported to be on one chartered flight originating in Manchester, United Kingdom. On November 29, the vessel underwent a routine, unannounced inspection. The Oceana scored 95 out of 100 points.
    • General Information

    • Cruise ship travelers are reminded that simple hygienic practices, such as frequent and thorough hand washing and avoiding contact with other passengers when ill, are important measures to prevent the spread of disease.
    • Additional information about CDCís Vessel Sanitation Program is available at http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/vsp.
    • Additional information on gastrointestinal diseases is available at http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvrd/gastro.htm.
    • Information on Norwalk-like viruses is available at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/pdf/rr/rr5009.pdf.
    • CDC protects peopleís health and safety by preventing and controlling diseases and injuries; enhances health decisions by providing credible information on critical health issues; and promotes healthy living through strong partnerships with local, national, and international organizations.
    • For more information, CDCís Vessel Sanitation Program can be reached at vsp@cdc.gov.