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Spirit of Discovery - any current onboard reports re Norovirus?


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2 hours ago, Pearl131313 said:

Have just phoned Saga cruises re my 2 Mar SOD booking. Have been told there is NO norovirus disease on board. The lady I spoke to said she knew nothing about it. If there was, she said I would be contacted. So people are ill on the Norway cruise.

What is the ships doctor/captain calling it?? I wonder.

Yes, There is still illness on the ship. I am in a cabin with one of the sufferers now.

The nurses are working flat out.

Two extra nurses have been brought onboard.

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It is interesting that those who have cruised with SAGA before seem to be group who do not find it a problem when an infectious disease is not being managed on SAGA cruise ships, this suggests that this may not be an unusual occurrence. Perhaps those who are new to SAGA are not prepared to accept this type of situation as normal. It is also important to remember hand gels do not protect against Norovirus as per the NHS guidance - Washing your hands frequently with soap and water is the best way to stop it spreading. Alcohol hand gels do not kill norovirus.

Edited by 1111453
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35 minutes ago, 1111453 said:

It is interesting that those who have cruised with SAGA before seem to be group who do not find it a problem when an infectious disease is not being managed on SAGA cruise ships, this suggests that this may not be an unusual occurrence. Perhaps those who are new to SAGA are not prepared to accept this type of situation as normal. It is also important to remember hand gels do not protect against Norovirus as per the NHS guidance - Washing your hands frequently with soap and water is the best way to stop it spreading. Alcohol hand gels do not kill norovirus.

 

I am a regular Saga cruiser, and I am pretty disturbed by 3 consecutive cruises having pretty high levels of gastic infections - all ships suffer from this at intervals, but I always thought that Saga handled problems better than most.

This no longer seems to be the case since the various changes at head office - why on earth not cancel the 4 day cruise in order to make a proper deep clean, break the cycle and give the crew a break?

The refund mentioned earlier was for those back-to-back with the 4 day cruise and this one - given the option of being quarantined for 48 hours regardless of whether or not infected, or leaving the ship and getting a refund on the Norwegian cruise. Don't think it applied to anyone else.

And yes, there are some loyal Saga cruisers who view any criticism of Saga as a personal insult.

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2 minutes ago, nosapphire said:

 

I am a regular Saga cruiser, and I am pretty disturbed by 3 consecutive cruises having pretty high levels of gastic infections - all ships suffer from this at intervals, but I always thought that Saga handled problems better than most.

This no longer seems to be the case since the various changes at head office - why on earth not cancel the 4 day cruise in order to make a proper deep clean, break the cycle and give the crew a break?

The refund mentioned earlier was for those back-to-back with the 4 day cruise and this one - given the option of being quarantined for 48 hours regardless of whether or not infected, or leaving the ship and getting a refund on the Norwegian cruise. Don't think it applied to anyone else.

And yes, there are some loyal Saga cruisers who view any criticism of Saga as a personal insult.

Interesting. Thanks.  Much the same on the P&O board - anyone who dares criticise the beloved P&O gets attacked, regardless of the facts.

 

I'm beginning to reach the conclusion, having considered switching to Saga, that maybe all cruise companies now have so many downsides that land based holidays might be a better and safer bet.

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4 hours ago, Scorpio41 said:


It the winter vomiting bug, gastroenteritis sometimes it’s called Nora virus. There have been fifteen cases according to the Captain, no new cases today and none of the crew have been affected. Providing you continually wash your hands and use the sanitisers, as I am, I don’t see it as a problem.

Scopio I think you are a different SoD to me. The nurses are working flat out and the ship has recruited 2 extra nurses to go back with the ship to Southampton.

 

How do I know - they told me when treated my wife and I in our cabin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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"Much the same on the P&O board - anyone who dares criticise the beloved P&O gets attacked, regardless of the facts"

 

I was on Fred Olsen once, and somebody was telling me that FO were better than any other cruise line.

When I asked who else they had cruised with, they said "nobody".

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Something does not make much sense here. One of the benefits of Saga is 24 hour room service at no extra cost (as promoted on their brochures - and the room service menu is very good).

If they have had to suspend room service because of 15 people needing 3 meals a day, does that mean that under normal circumstances if more than 2% of the passengers want room service on the same day they can't provide it?

Even allowing for the extra time taken by staff having to gown and mask up, still seems a bit odd that if there are only 15 passengers it brings room service to a halt.

Brochures don't say anything about "room service - subject to availability".

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There is a lot more than 15 - you dont employ 2 extra nurses for 15 patients with a 48hr bug.

I will write more at Southampton.

 

The hand cleaners provided on the ship, quite clearly state 'kills Norovirus'.

 

They are not testing every patient for Norovirus. My wife has not been been tested. I have been tested because I requested it. The nurse rang me back and said the test was negative !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Edited by kathekas
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11 hours ago, kathekas said:

Scopio I think you are a different SoD to me. The nurses are working flat out and the ship has recruited 2 extra nurses to go back with the ship to Southampton.

 

How do I know - they told me when treated my wife and I in our cabin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I was relaying the information the Captain told us in his morning address. 

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I can only offer empathy for those who have the norovirus symptoms, awful!! ... they don't necessarily test for norovirus, cause you 'know' when you've got it!, and no definitive medication is available, just quarantine yourself, inform the onboard medics, and keep well hydrated, including diahoalites. It is commonly known as the 48 hr bug, so as terrible as if is, you know it shouldn't go much past 3 days.
I would just like to reiterate, this is not a cruise ship virus!, a higher percentage can catch this on land, but because when you are in a confined environment, there is obviously a higher risk of contamination, and better news coverage. Cruise ships have the cleanest environment compared with so many land based establishments. It is only us public that bring this bug onboard, and when it is detected the ships go through thorough cleaning regimes, so as to try to contain it, but this bug can spread so rapidly, public loos and handrails being the worst, ( and elevator buttons, use your knuckles!) Regarding reporting this virus , I believe the ship has a report that goes to 'every' port it visits, even if the count is nil, it is a report that is required in every port, and only if the count of gastrointestinal infected guests are higher than 3% (2% in the US, I think?) then there may be a visit from the men in white coats, CDC, to conduct tests on the ship. Therefore on this current cruise that would equate to approx 42 people ( guest +crew) would have to be registered as having the virus before outside actions have to be enforced.
Having travelled myself and family, on different cruise lines Saga, P&O, Cunard, Seabourn, H/A, etc. I believe they all have relatively same procedures for these outbreaks as there is a sterilization procedure to be enforced. ... how the companies deal with compensating for this is a completely different topic! I know this is no consolation for people who have this, but I just dont feel these ships should get known as the Norovirus Ships, and please please please everyone, wash your hands frequently, and use tissue to open/close bathroom doors, our fellow guests are not 'all' as conscientious as you. .... by the way, this is all , in my opinion, everyone is entitled to theirs 😉

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Cruise Beach, what a sensible posting following scares from people not even on the ship.  I've never heard of anyone being tested for Norovirus and it's present as you say in schools, hospitals, anywhere there are large numbers of people.  It's quite possible for a ship to have a deep clean and then for a new passenger to bring it on board, not the ship or the cruise line's fault.  

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There are more than 44 passengers affected more like 100 plus. 

 

Maybe the need to report infection levels caused the ship not to be allowed into Gibraltar

 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-7986387/Saga-cruise-ship-Southampton-days-turned-away-Gibraltar-norovirus.html

Edited by kathekas
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Hi Kathekas, .. Yes that is why it was not allowed into Gibraltar,  but that was the previous 4 days cruise, the ship arrived back to Southampton earlier and sailed later due to performing deep clean duties. As previously stated, every ship has a daily n/virus report which goes to the next port, this current cruise would not be allowed into any port with 100+ sick guests.  

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1 hour ago, Cruise Beach said:

Hi Kathekas, .. Yes that is why it was not allowed into Gibraltar,  but that was the previous 4 days cruise, the ship arrived back to Southampton earlier and sailed later due to performing deep clean duties. As previously stated, every ship has a daily n/virus report which goes to the next port, this current cruise would not be allowed into any port with 100+ sick guests.  

yes, I agree, what about over a period of time?

 

How can they do an accurate NoroVirus report when they are NOT testing all passengers suspected of being infected with NoroVirus?

 

I think it would easier if the captain just gave us all the figures, this would end all the speculation.

Edited by kathekas
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1 hour ago, Cruise Beach said:

Hi Kathekas, .. Yes that is why it was not allowed into Gibraltar,  but that was the previous 4 days cruise, the ship arrived back to Southampton earlier and sailed later due to performing deep clean duties. As previously stated, every ship has a daily n/virus report which goes to the next port, this current cruise would not be allowed into any port with 100+ sick guests.  

 

Gibraltar - was 55 prior to Gibraltar, 89 at Gibraltar, then 120 just after Gibraltar (the 120 was according to news report from Saga). Ship and terminal supposedly deep cleaned at Southampton, then a 4 day cruise which also suffered from a gastric/vomiting bug - ship supposedly deep cleaned again at Southampton.

Now another gastric bug which may or may not be norovirus. Presume another deep clean expected.

On our cruise it was a very nasty chest infection felling everybody - (good job the coronovirus scare had not started then, otherwise we'd still be going in circles).

There have always been infections (including vomiting bugs) on cruises, but on on this new ship it does it seem to spread more savagely and cause more disruption.

Previously with Saga you knew somebody was infectious when you saw the deep cleaning squad trundling along the corridor, but it was always well managed and contained to a few isolated passengers - so what has changed with this new ship?.

There have always been people who don't wash their hands and merrily spread disease behind them, can't just be down to this.

It will certainly help if the buffet is now waiter served, as the layout means that passengers reaching for the back trays have their noses pressed against the covering glass - not very hygienic.

Anyway, I still cannot understand why less than 2% of passengers needing 3 meals a day room service has brought room service to the rest of the ship to a halt.

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Question: What is worn by everyone on every cruise but not sent to the laundry?

 

Answer:    Life jackets.

 

This is directed to all you sailors of experience out there.

How do they clean the life jackets before each new occupant of a cabin?

I hope I am  wrong but it appears they just get stacked back onto a shelf in wardrobe. A potential source of norovirus perhaps?

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24 minutes ago, Pearl131313 said:

 

Question: What is worn by everyone on every cruise but not sent to the laundry?

 

Answer:    Life jackets.

 

This is directed to all you sailors of experience out there.

How do they clean the life jackets before each new occupant of a cabin?

I hope I am  wrong but it appears they just get stacked back onto a shelf in wardrobe. A potential source of norovirus perhaps?

Sounds very plausible to me.

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On a positive note I would like to thank the crews who have been working so hard to care for us during this situation.

 

They always do things very willingly, with a smile on their face (underneath their maks), at antime night and day and with no complaints.

 

I do believe the ship has gone the extra mile in terms of trying to get the situation under control.

 

Sanitizers on every table in the bars, by lift doors (these quite clearly state kills NoroVirus). Issuing personal bottles sanitizing gels.

 

Also the staff who have on guard duty,  all day, everyday, outside the toilets checking people wash their hands, what a horrible mind numbing job but well done, and always with a smile

 

Eliminating self service in the buffet - I like this idea so much I hope they keep it.

 

Its hard to know from a passenger view point what more they could have done.

 

Once again a big thank you.

 

 

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Does anyone know if the fleet of vehicles used for door-to-door transport gets disinfected between trips? I guess many vehicles on the shorter journeys collect passengers from one cruise, take them home, and then collect new passengers to return to the port. Seems likely that without a good clean in between, this could be a way of any infection just bouncing back through a deep cleaned terminal to a deep cleaned ship! (Not to mention the risk of picking something up during the comfort stop at a service station on the way?)

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Let's hope than in addition to monitoring the public toilets, cabin stewards are reporting any cabin where the soap/handwash by the sink is not being used... people who don't wash their hands in the public toilets are unlikely to wash their hands in their cabin, either (and this has always been a problem, not just now).

Means of transmission? I would think the library books are more likely than the lifejackets.

Other problem may be that there are a lot of new and very eager to please crew - and they can be very unsure about telling a passenger to do something.

If the crew have now been given direct orders to demand that passengers wash hands, use sanitisers, do not re-use plates or rummage around in the buffet, then that should give them the confidence to enforce the common sense rules.

It should not be necessary, unfortunately it is. Let's hope the next cruise is trouble free.

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