COVID-19 outbreak on Coral Princess among crew and passengers

 Monday, July 11, 2022 


Queensland authorities say a COVID-19 outbreak on a cruise ship was expected, as the state nears 41,000 active cases.

The outbreak of about 100 people among the crew and some passengers on the Coral Princess in Brisbane on Sunday led to Princess Cruises offering refunds to those booked on its next 12-day cruise.

There were more than 2,300 guests and crew on the cruise ship, which was headed to New South Wales. Of the 100 positive cases, a small number of guests disembarked in Brisbane.

Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said COVID-19 protocols were in place on the ship before the outbreak.

She said some passengers are isolating at home or in other accommodation, while authorities are helping the company manage infected staff on board. This was always going to happen just like the rest of community, Ms D’Ath said.

A Princess Cruises spokesperson said they were doing everything possible to enable guests and crew to stay safe alongside COVID.

The spokesperson said that they have also been open and transparent with guests on the effectiveness of our protocols and this has led to some recent media coverage.

He also said that protocols included regular testing of crew, who must all be fully vaccinated, and isolation if they test positive.

In answer to media inquiries at the weekend, we noted that fewer than 20 guests on the previous cruise had tested positive, they said.

The health and well-being of our guests and crew remain our main priority and the protocols being followed on board are working.

Cases were expected

A Queensland Health spokesperson said the cases on the cruise ship were expected and they were prepared to manage them.

Cruise ship crew and their passengers are subject to strict requirements to minimise the COVID-19 risk to Queenslanders.

Cruising plays a vital role in our state’s tourism industry and it is important we continue to adapt and learn to live with COVID-19.

Almost 41,000 active cases

Queensland recorded another 4,804 COVID-19 cases on Monday, taking the number of active cases to 40,489.

No-one has died with the virus but there are 782 people in hospital and 10 in intensive care.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said there were no plans to mandate face masks, and said it was up to individuals whether to wear one or not. It’s people’s personal responsibility, she said.

So, if they are in a crowded area, it is their choice to put on that mask.

She urged people over the age of 65 to wear masks and ensure they have had a booster, as those ending up in hospital and tragically, the people are losing their lives, are people over 65.

With children returning to class after school holidays on Monday, the Health Minister called on parents to keep their kids home if they were sick.

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