Investigation Update on the Emerald Princess
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Cruise Line: Princess Cruises
Cruise Ship: Emerald Princess
Voyage Dates: Dec 17-27, 2012
Number of passengers who have reported being ill during the voyage out of total number of passengers onboard: 189 of 3235 (5.84%)
Number of crew who have reported being ill during the voyage out of total number of crew onboard: 31 of 1189 (2.61%)
Predominant symptoms: vomiting, diarrhea
Causative agent: Norovirus
Actions: In response to the outbreak, Princess Cruises and the crew aboard the ship took the following actions:
- Increased cleaning and disinfection procedures according to their outbreak prevention and response plan,
- Made announcements to notify onboard passengers and crew of the outbreak, encourage case reporting, and encourage hand hygiene,
- Collected stool specimens from ill passengers and crew sent them to the CDC lab,
- Made twice daily reports of gastrointestinal illness cases to the VSP,
- Consulted with CDC on plans for their comprehensive sanitation procedures in Ft. Lauderdale, FL on December 27, 2012, including:
- Notification of the outbreak to embarking guests,
- Provision of additional time for thorough public and accommodation super-sanitization cleaning and disinfection during their extended time in port,
- Staged disembarkation for active cases to limit the opportunity of illness transmission to well guests, and planning for sanitation of terminal and transport infection control procedures.
A CDC Vessel Sanitation Program environmental health officer and an epidemiologist boarded the ship on arrival in Ft. Lauderdale on December 27, 2012 to conduct an environmental health assessment and evaluate the outbreak and response activities.