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cruise ships
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vomiting and diarrhea
Norovirus On Cruise Ships - How To Stay Well
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Norovirus on Cruise Ships  -  How to Stay Well

Well it is that time of the year again. Flu outbreaks, colds and viruses, and yes the norovirus on cruise ships. Every winter is seems that the norovirus worsens this time of year. Hundreds of passengers on three ships have been hit with this ugly virus.

Princess cruise lines announced that two of their ships were detained for sanitation after an outbreak of the norovirus hit the Crown Princess and the Ruby Princess. Port Everglades, in Fort Lauderdale, is the home port for both of these ships. Royal Caribbean also announced that one of their ships, Voyager of the Seas, has also experienced increased numbers of passengers with the norovirus. The Voyager of the Seas was also detained at its home port in New Orleans for cleaning.

The norovirus is a highly contagious gastrointestinal virus that causes stomach upset, vomiting and diarrhea. Cruise lines are required to report all cases of the norovirus to the Center of Disease Control. When the number of reported cases reach 2% of the total onboard population than the ship's next sailings are delayed to give the crew time to sanitize the ships. The Ruby Princess had 3,133 passengers with 92 reported cases, and 13 reported cases of the 1,186 crew members. The Crown Princess reported 364 of their 3,103 passengers and 30 of 1,168 crew members.

The United States Centers for disease control has an online database that records the outbreaks of norovirus for the cruise ships. The ships that participate in the program report the number of cases of norovirus to the Center for Disease Control and then they post it on their website.

So, if we are taking a cruise how do we keep from getting sick. Well, the Center for Disease Control states that the norovirus is highly contagious. It spreads from person to person, through food and water, and by touching contaminated surfaces. This is why it is so very important that the ships be sanitized before new passengers board for the next cruise. As with most illnesses, it is extremely important to wash your hands often. Frequent hand washing with soap and water is key to help prevent the spread of norovirus.

I have been on many cruises and it seems that the peak time for norovirus is in the late winter and early spring. I have been lucky not to have contracted this illness on any of my trips. The cruise ships do a great job of trying to keep things clean, plus they put hand sanitizer stations in many places on the ship to help with keeping your hands germ free. The key is to use the sanitizer. Follow the same rules as you would if you were home. Don't eat or drink after people, don't put your hands in your mouth, you know the drill. You are extra careful during flu season, just be cautious when on vacation. Let's face it, getting sick is not what we have in mind for a great vacation.


Street Talk

  

I appreciate the way you give such straight forward information. Thanks for the link, I'll check it out.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Ljupcho  

You're welcomed Tracy. I'm streaming towards perfection in my job therefore I like critics to all segments of our human society. Reading the news that affect the cruise industry years back, which by my opinion are not so bright, you instantly start to become aware of the seriousness of the situation while cruising somewhere in the world. A lot of people that make some critics to the cruise industry and its management could be find at the following useful link at ripoffreport dot com Sometimes is useful to know.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
  

Thanks for your great insight. It is nice to hear an insider report of exactly how things operate. It seems that the trend with companies today is just making more money. They will cut whatever corners they need to meet their bottom line. The people that end up suffering are the paying hard working people. I wonder if the crew members are paid enough to care, or if their practices on the ship is just a result of their rual environment. It seems they are over worked on a ship and I have noticed that some lately seem like they just don't care. Regardless, as you said proper measures need to taken. With regards to guests, it seems it is a sign of the times. I have noticed people just seem to be more relaxed in hygiene than in the past. Makes you think every time you go out to eat.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Ljupcho  

I have had a chance to work on Carnival Liberty while crossing the Atlantic in 2006 and at that time Noro virus took 3 lives. The source of this nasty sickness by me, are the Guests from one side and crew members from other. Many of the guests never obey the instructions given by the Hotel Management in regards to the personal hygiene on board the ships. It sounds crazy but believe me there were eye witness evidences at that time when guests were seen leaving the toilet without washing the hands. On other side some of the crew members working in a food related departments were often found sleeping in their cabins with their uniforms without taking basic hygiene precautions. And finally the head office department managers with their cruise crew recruit policies that allow to recruit personnel without knowledge coming from very rural environments just to spare as much as they can on their work force engagement. Many crew members especially from Europe use to resign and fly back home after seeing the situation on the ships. This kind of recruitment of the cruise personnel must finally stop. It is negative trend, witnessed by the Noro viruses, Bed bugs, procedure miss-handling's many tragedies and even catastrophes. I think proper measures should be undertaken by all sides in order to enjoy the cruise safely, and get back its popularity.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Kyle  

I have heard of outbreaks like this happening on cruises...I couldn't imagine!

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
  

Yea, definitely something that would ruin your vacation.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
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