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Investigation Update on the Dawn Princess

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Investigation Update - May 16, 2005

Princess Cruise Line reported an increased number of cases of gastrointestinal (GI) illness on the cruise ship, Dawn Princess, for the voyage completed on May 14, 2005, (sailing dates: 4/29-5/14/2005) in San Francisco, CA.

On May 12, 2005, Princess Cruise Line contacted CDC’s Vessel Sanitation Program (VSP) staff to report that an elevated number of Dawn Princess passengers and crew members were experiencing GI illness. On May 16, the ship’s medical staff reported that 76 of 1974 (3.9%) passengers and 9 of 864 (1.0%) crew members were ill. The predominant symptom was diarrhea.

The ship's staff implemented additional cleaning and disinfection procedures. VSP staff boarded the ship for a scheduled inspection and provided additional guidance on controlling gastrointestinal illnesses. Stool specimens were collected and tested positive for norovirus. Medical staff continued to monitor gastrointestinal illness cases; by the following voyage the number of reported cases of gastrointestinal illness returned to expected levels.