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Plum Happy

Cruise Ship Inspections

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Posted (edited)

There's a very interesting article on USA Today's Travel section in regards to cruise ship inspections with Princess cruise ship as the focus but it is an eye opener in regards to proper medical documentation.  I see changes coming within the industry.

 

Princess had a high rate of illness before coronavirus.  

 

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/investigations/2020/03/20/before-coronavirus-princess-cruises-saw-outbreaks-alarming-rates/5047508002/

Edited by Plum Happy

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Inspections have NOTHING to do with passenger behavior -- just in crew behavior and sanitation techniques.

A scrupulously clean ship can have a noro-infected person board and spread illness to others, simply from poor hand hygiene on the part of the infected person and those who get infected.  

It's not a cruise line's fault that humans are disgusting animals.  They do what they can with Purell dispensers and sinks at the buffet entryway, but if people don't wash their hands, contamination is going to happen.

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3 minutes ago, brillohead said:

Inspections have NOTHING to do with passenger behavior -- just in crew behavior and sanitation techniques.

A scrupulously clean ship can have a noro-infected person board and spread illness to others, simply from poor hand hygiene on the part of the infected person and those who get infected.  

It's not a cruise line's fault that humans are disgusting animals.  They do what they can with Purell dispensers and sinks at the buffet entryway, but if people don't wash their hands, contamination is going to happen.

There's a lot that can be changed and upgrad practices need to go into affect.  They need better medical practices on cruise ships.   As stated, the current system is aimed at preventing stomach bugs, rather than an influenza-like illness which spreads by air.

 

We can see the changes Royal is making that was brought out via this article, such as taking the temperature of crew members and assess and contain risk that they can cause, all it takes is one sick passenger to spread it to the crew, especially a food service worker.  Many of the same health factors that fuel gastrointestinal illness outbreaks are also suspected of contributing to spread the coronavirus.

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I think one thing they could do would be to have cooks dispense food at the buffet instead of people serving themseles.  It only takes one sick person to pick up a service spoon, get something, put it back and pass the germs along to the next person, no matter how much Purell they used entering the buffet.  

 

I have witnessed cases of utensils being dropped, picked up and put back.  

I have seen people grab food with their bare hands.

I have seen sneeze and then pick up a service utensil and get food. 

 

Amazing the things you see at the buffet when you have time to kill and enjoy people watching. 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, DaKahuna said:

I think one thing they could do would be to have cooks dispense food at the buffet instead of people serving themseles.  It only takes one sick person to pick up a service spoon, get something, put it back and pass the germs along to the next person, no matter how much Purell they used entering the buffet.  

 

I have witnessed cases of utensils being dropped, picked up and put back.  

I have seen people grab food with their bare hands.

I have seen sneeze and then pick up a service utensil and get food. 

 

Amazing the things you see at the buffet when you have time to kill and enjoy people watching. 

 

 

All true except when they serve you it takes forever if the crew is short, which it is on most cruise lines.

On Oceania Insignia it took almost 10 minutes to get a cup of soup because the same server who served the soup also made the Caesar salads.  And did 4 individual salads to specific requests (changed frequently) before serving the soup.

 

The easiest solution, which we have been doing on ships for 15+ years is after serving yourself, go to your table, reach into your purse for a small sanitizer bottle and re-clean.  Problem  solved.

Same process after handling the menu in the MDR.  No idea what kind of lousy hygiene hands touched that menu before me.

Edited by ECCruise

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Here's another article from the Washington Post - Trump is a long time friend of Carnival Corp. chairman, Mickey Arison.  It doesn't paint a rosy picture for Carnival, it could have been any line by what the inactions they took.

 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/cruise-ships-kept-sailing-as-coronavirus-spread-travelers-and-health-experts-question-why/2020/03/20/5b640f14-67e2-11ea-b5f1-a5a804158597_story.html

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41 minutes ago, DaKahuna said:

I have witnessed cases of utensils being dropped, picked up and put back.  

I have seen people grab food with their bare hands.

I have seen sneeze and then pick up a service utensil and get food. 

You see this every day at any buffet (at sea or on land). The worst are those who eat while in the buffet line, licking their fingers between bites, and picking up the next serving spoon. 

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17 hours ago, ECCruise said:

All true except when they serve you it takes forever if the crew is short, which it is on most cruise lines.

On Oceania Insignia it took almost 10 minutes to get a cup of soup because the same server who served the soup also made the Caesar salads.  And did 4 individual salads to specific requests (changed frequently) before serving the soup.

 

The easiest solution, which we have been doing on ships for 15+ years is after serving yourself, go to your table, reach into your purse for a small sanitizer bottle and re-clean.  Problem  solved.

Same process after handling the menu in the MDR.  No idea what kind of lousy hygiene hands touched that menu before me.

I agree to a certain extent, but if that contaminated spoon or hand goes into the food, problem not solved.

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On 3/20/2020 at 3:16 PM, DaKahuna said:

Amazing the things you see at the buffet when you have time to kill and enjoy people watching. 

 

Suggested edit: 

 

Amazing the things you see at the buffet when people watching, and you have time to imagine some you would like to kill.

 

Sorry.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/20/2020 at 3:03 PM, Plum Happy said:

There's a lot that can be changed and upgrad practices need to go into affect.  They need better medical practices on cruise ships.   As stated, the current system is aimed at preventing stomach bugs, rather than an influenza-like illness which spreads by air.

 

We can see the changes Royal is making that was brought out via this article, such as taking the temperature of crew members and assess and contain risk that they can cause, all it takes is one sick passenger to spread it to the crew, especially a food service worker.  Many of the same health factors that fuel gastrointestinal illness outbreaks are also suspected of contributing to spread the coronavirus.

Just for perspective you have a 30 times greater risk of getting norovirus on land vs on cruise ship. 1 sick person will not bring down an entire ship..seriously,dont get into this kind of paranoia state. Viruses are always a threat. The reason why its such a huge issue with covid is that they dont want the health care services overwhelmed. Its new so people dont have immunity yet. Once millions get immunity it will not be as contagious. Stop the paranoia! Im working 48 hours a week as a firefighter/paramedic. Seen many sick people,im not sick. Im not paranoid. If I get it so what.... Ill recover...

 

remember 1000s of cruises go off daily without any outbreaks. If 1 ship gets an outbreak its “breaking news”.... we live in a era of shock news. Its not very prevalent. Staying on land is a far greater risk of getting sick.

Edited by rtazz17

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On 3/20/2020 at 11:41 AM, Plum Happy said:

There's a very interesting article on USA Today's Travel section in regards to cruise ship inspections with Princess cruise ship as the focus but it is an eye opener in regards to proper medical documentation.  I see changes coming within the industry.

 

Princess had a high rate of illness before coronavirus.  

 

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/investigations/2020/03/20/before-coronavirus-princess-cruises-saw-outbreaks-alarming-rates/5047508002/

The main fallacy with this "investigation", and the Jim Walker "expose" that I'm sure led to this, is that they are using a subset of data that skews the results.  The only "outbreaks" that can be "investigated" by the public are the ones that are reported on the CDC website.  If you look, you will see that these are listed as "outbreak updates".  Every cruise ship, every time it enters the US, must report the number of GI illnesses onboard, even if that number is zero, within 36 hours prior to entering US waters.  Now, if the number of cases reported reaches 2% of passengers or crew, a further "special" report must be made immediately.  When the number of cases reported reaches 3% of passengers or crew, another "special" report is made immediately.  It is only when this third report is filed, does it make it to the CDC's website.  Therefore, if 35 cruise ships have less than 2% of passengers report ill, this could be over 1300 cases (1.9% of 70,000 pax on these 35 ships), but none of these illnesses get "investigated" by this article.  If those same 35 cruise ships have 2.9% of passengers report ill, this again could be over 2000 illnesses, but they are not in the data set used by this "investigation".  So, while according to their figures, Princess accounted for 5000 illnesses, over a decade, there were a total of 18,000 total cases over that decade.  Where were these other cases, how were they distributed among cruise lines, and again, where did the numbers come from?  Was it just from the "outbreak update" data available on the CDC website?  If so, then any ship could have cruised week after week with 1-2% of passengers ill, for a decade, and that data would never make it to the "investigation".  Which is worse, 26 large scale outbreaks, or perhaps weeks and months of smaller outbreaks that actually sicken more people than the fewer larger ones?

 

I have no dog in this fight, never sailed Princess, but I feel that lazy journalism begets hysteria and false conclusions.

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On 3/20/2020 at 3:03 PM, Plum Happy said:

There's a lot that can be changed and upgrad practices need to go into affect.  They need better medical practices on cruise ships.   As stated, the current system is aimed at preventing stomach bugs, rather than an influenza-like illness which spreads by air.

 

We can see the changes Royal is making that was brought out via this article, such as taking the temperature of crew members and assess and contain risk that they can cause, all it takes is one sick passenger to spread it to the crew, especially a food service worker.  Many of the same health factors that fuel gastrointestinal illness outbreaks are also suspected of contributing to spread the coronavirus.

Well, the CDC is probably the best at studying epidemics and how they spread, and they are the ones who designed the VSP for the cruise ships.

 

Not sure where you see changes by "Royal" (RCI?) that "was brought out by this article"?  Please explain the linkage.

 

And, crew are far more concerned with sanitation than 90% of passengers, and have way better hand hygiene than most passengers, especially US passengers.

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On 3/20/2020 at 3:16 PM, DaKahuna said:

 

I have witnessed cases of utensils being dropped, picked up and put back.  

I have seen people grab food with their bare hands.

I have seen sneeze and then pick up a service utensil and get food. 

 

Amazing the things you see at the buffet when you have time to kill and enjoy people watching. 

 

 

I was on Freedom last week. The staff in the Windjammer was changing out ALL of the serving utensils every 15 minutes or so. I know that won't solve all of the problems but it's a big step. With all the stuff going on, I watched a woman use the serving spoon to get a slice of peach off the buffet. She then proceeded to grab the slice off the spoon with her fingers. I looked at her and said "Really??". She just looked at me and walked away. I gave the spoon to the staff to replace.

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37 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

Well, the CDC is probably the best at studying epidemics and how they spread, and they are the ones who designed the VSP for the cruise ships.

 

Not sure where you see changes by "Royal" (RCI?) that "was brought out by this article"?  Please explain the linkage.

 

And, crew are far more concerned with sanitation than 90% of passengers, and have way better hand hygiene than most passengers, especially US passengers.

How?  Everyday they are doing temperature checks on the crew.  Was that done before?  Maybe they need to do it on all passengers to stop those who know they are sick from boarding.

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Plum Happy said:

How?  Everyday they are doing temperature checks on the crew.  Was that done before?  Maybe they need to do it on all passengers to stop those who know they are sick from boarding.

And this is a response to CDC guidelines, not the article you linked, and anyway, do you have any indication that this practice will continue after the coronavirus epidemic has ended?

 

Why wasn't this done before?  Because the CDC did not feel that cruise ships were a significant transmission vector for airborne infections like this.  Will this result in changes to the CDC requirements for cruise ships?  Maybe, up to them.  Will cruise lines revert to past practices in lieu of any updates from CDC?  Maybe, up to them.  Will any of this affect cruise ships that don't call at US ports?  Maybe, up to other nation's agencies and whether they have cruise ship sanitation guidelines.

Edited by chengkp75

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At any given time people can look at the most recent ship inspections, I’ve done many times over the years.

Nothing yo do with Illness just interesting to see the reports

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4 hours ago, Plum Happy said:

How?  Everyday they are doing temperature checks on the crew.  Was that done before?  Maybe they need to do it on all passengers to stop those who know they are sick from boarding.

 

I boarded Freedom of the Seas on March 8th. Every passenger had their temperature checked before they entered the terminal!

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