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CDC gives further guidance on CSO


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46 minutes ago, molly361 said:

I don't see what has changed.  Anyone have the cliff note version of what is different from the original CSO?

NBC Nightly News just noted that the CDC advised cruise lines to have plans for vaccinating and testing both crew AND passengers.  Maybe it was mis-stated and the CDC actually suggested having plans to vaccinated and test crew and test passengers?

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6 minutes ago, hallux said:

NBC Nightly News just noted that the CDC advised cruise lines to have plans for vaccinating and testing both crew AND passengers.  Maybe it was mis-stated and the CDC actually suggested having plans to vaccinated and test crew and test passengers?

 

It reads to me more of a suggestion, but mandates masks while in U.S. waters. 

 

"Vaccination Components of a Cruise Ship Operator’s Agreement with Port and Local Health Authorities

CDC recommends that all eligible port personnel and travelers (passengers and crew) get a COVID-19 vaccine when one is available to them. Parties to an agreement between a cruise ship operator and U.S. port and local health authorities should ensure that the agreement additionally incorporates the following components relating to vaccination of port personnel, crew, and future passengers:

 

A plan and timeline for vaccination of cruise ship crew prior to resuming passenger operations. Due to the international representation of cruise travelers, cruise operators must use either U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-authorized vaccines or a vaccine product that has received emergency use listing from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Presentation of proposals regarding how the cruise ship operator intends to incorporate vaccination strategies to maximally protect passengers and crew from introduction, amplification, and spread of COVID-19 in the maritime environment and land-based communities.

Designation of a cruise ship operator vaccine coordinator to oversee implementation and maintenance.

Implementation of processes for vaccinating crew currently onboard as well as newly embarking crew. If any adverse events occur, a cruise ship clinician should report them to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting Systemexternal icon (VAERS) for FDA-authorized vaccines and through appropriate reporting mechanisms for vaccines approved for use by other countries. See VAERS Frequently Asked Questionsexternal icon for additional information.

Education of port personnel and travelers about the importance of getting COVID-19 vaccine.

Implementation of processes for vaccinating port personnel who are expected to interact with travelers.

Port authorities and cruise ship operators should consider hosting vaccination clinics for port personnel who are expected to interact with travelers. Port employers should encourage employees who are expected to interact with travelers to get a COVID-19 vaccine when one is available to them and give employees information about how to get vaccinated locally.

Fully vaccinated port personnel and travelers are still subject to all of the requirements of CDC’s Order requiring wearing of masks on conveyances entering, traveling within or leaving the United States, and in U.S. transportation hubs (see maritime-specific Frequently Asked Questions)."

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42 minutes ago, HBCcruiser said:

 

I have to admit I wish the CDC would have mandated vaccines and let cruises go.  But the glass half-full part of me sees progress.  We're at Phase 2A, hopefully 2B is around the corner.  In theory the cruise lines should be able to get the agreements with the U.S. ports fairly quickly.  One would think it wouldn't take too long as both the cruise lines and ports are extremely motivated.  Assuming they can start the test cruises in the not too distant future and after successful test cruises one can hope the authorization would be close at hand. 

 

image.png.be8c133a48690a81989d32d0ee58158d.png

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2 minutes ago, mianmike said:

Assuming they can start the test cruises in the not too distant future and after successful test cruises one can hope the authorization would be close at hand

 

I am praying hard that this is true. 🙏🙏🙏😀

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Posted (edited)
32 minutes ago, mianmike said:

 

I have to admit I wish the CDC would have mandated vaccines and let cruises go.  But the glass half-full part of me sees progress.  We're at Phase 2A, hopefully 2B is around the corner.  In theory the cruise lines should be able to get the agreements with the U.S. ports fairly quickly.  One would think it wouldn't take too long as both the cruise lines and ports are extremely motivated.  Assuming they can start the test cruises in the not too distant future and after successful test cruises one can hope the authorization would be close at hand. 

 

image.png.be8c133a48690a81989d32d0ee58158d.png

 

IMO a more pragmatic way of starting cruising back up is to limit occupancy to 50% of ship capacity for the first 6-8 weeks, if there's no incidents increase it by 10% each subsequent 4 weeks. Also mandate a vaccine, a PCR test 3 days prior to sailing, and a rapid test prior to getting on the ship and as you get off the ship as well.

 

They could also mandate that the cruise lines provide free medical care for any Covid related symptoms onboard so that passengers aren't discouraged from seeking medical attention because it would cost them too much. Just an idea.

Edited by DaCruiseBug
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35 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

IMO a more pragmatic way of starting cruising back up is to limit occupancy to 50% of ship capacity for the first 6-8 weeks, if there's no incidents increase it by 10% each subsequent 4 weeks. Also mandate a vaccine, a PCR test 3 days prior to sailing, and a rapid test prior to getting on the ship and as you get off the ship as well.

 

They could also mandate that the cruise lines provide free medical care for any Covid related symptoms onboard so that passengers aren't discouraged from seeking medical attention because it would cost them too much. Just an idea.

 

I like it.  Your suggestion seems totally reasonable, workable and easy to monitor.  Therefore it will never happen. 

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27 minutes ago, Sand and Seas said:

So how long to get from Phase 2A to Phase 4?

  

 

Let's hope recent CDC timeline history is not predictive. 

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8 hours ago, mianmike said:

Assuming they can start the test cruises in the not too distant future and after successful test cruises one can hope the authorization would be close at hand. 

The key here is how quickly the cruise lines can get the agreements with port and health agencies in place.  This will show how much pre-planning the cruise lines have done, or whether they have been sitting on their hands since these agreements were outlined a year ago.

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8 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

The key here is how quickly the cruise lines can get the agreements with port and health agencies in place.  This will show how much pre-planning the cruise lines have done, or whether they have been sitting on their hands since these agreements were outlined a year ago.

 

Agree, it's been quite some time since they outlined the plans.  One would think/hope the Royal/NCLH Healthy Sail Panel has laid a foundation somewhat similar to what the CDC is asking.  I reread the "Healthy Sail Panel Full Recommendations" report and while it doesn't specifically address all the CDC's requirements hopefully the cruise lines have produced ancillary detailed plans with the ports.  If nothing else the Healthy Sail plan would at least give the cruise lines a head start on things such as crew testing and disembarkation of infected pax etc. 

 

A few random excerpts from the plan that somewhat address the port planning:

 

https://www.royalcaribbean.com/content/dam/royal/resources/pdf/healthy-sail-panel-full-recommendations.pdf

 

 ". . . As noted above, one of the most critical aspects of an effective evacuation plan is maintaining controls to reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2. The Panel recommends that individuals who have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, their close contacts, and anyone under investigation be separately debarked from the ship and transported using privately contracted transportation methods to a medical facility, home, or designated quarantine or isolation location to avoid exposing individuals off the ship to SARS-CoV-2.

A safe path home or to medical treatment is the goal of any debarkation, whether small- or large-scale. In order to implement the recommendation of appropriately separating infectious and healthy individuals, it is very important that arrangements be made in advance for potential quarantine and treatment facilities, as well as privately contracted transportation that keeps infected individuals, close contacts, and suspected cases from using commercial means of transportation and potentially spreading infections during transport.

 

. . . Additionally, should an outbreak occur on board, cruise operators must be able to debark guests to execute their evacuation plans. As such, cruise operators must preemptively secure agreement from any potential ports of call that a cruise ship with an active outbreak may debark and evacuate guests. As detailed above in our full recommendations on evacuation planning, it is important to note that it is not recommended that any individuals with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infections use commercial transportation.

 

"Debarkation Scenarios

 

50 Cruise operators should have a thorough mobilization response plan in place prior to sailing to address the various scenarios that may require individuals with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (guests or crew), and their close contacts, to debark from the ship.

 

52 Cruise operators should establish offsite incident management with designated medical professionals’ advice to respond rapidly and to aid in decision-making. 

 

53 In any debarkation scenario, individuals with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, close contacts, and persons under investigation should be kept separate from any healthy individuals (i.e., those not identified through contact tracing or those who have tested negative). 

 

Destination & Itinerary Planning 

 

55 There are two essential prerequisites that need to be satisfied in order for a ship to sail to a given port: 1) Approval from the local government to visit a port. 2) Agreement to allow safe passage to SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals and their close contacts to debark and travel home. 

 

56 Cruise operators should rely primarily on three key parameters when determining whether to travel to a given port: 1) Current burden of SARS CoV-2 as defined by testing rate, positivity rate, and death rate. 2) Local testing capacity. 3) Local/regional/national implementation of SARS CoV-2 mitigation protocols. 

 

57 In the startup phase, cruises itineraries should be as simple as possible, utilizing private, cruise line-owned and operated destinations or ports where there can be tight control of the onshore experience. 

 

58 Cruise operators should initially return to service with shorter length trips.

 

While unlikely, a full-scale debarkation is a highly complex operation for which detailed emergency planning is warranted. The Panel therefore recommends planning, practicing, and revising operational plans to best prepare for this unlikely but resource-intensive scenario. Importantly, all protocols and preparations should ensure that the cruise operators are prepared to provide for a fullscale debarkation without burdening the resources of any federal, state, or local governments. Specifically, full-scale debarkation plans should be sure to account for onshore care delivery (and transportation to the appropriate care facility) should the situation/individual medical condition warrant it. In a full-scale debarkation, all guests (including individuals with a SARS-CoV-2 infection and those who are healthy) will be removed from the ship and safely transported to the appropriate destination.

 

The highest risk scenario, which would necessitate a full ship debarkation and cancellation of the cruise, would be reached in the event of a high number of cases, extensive onboard transmission, contact tracing capacity being exceeded, and onboard resource capabilities being exceeded. In all these cases, advance contracting with third-party providers will be needed to ensure that government resources (whether international, U.S. federal, or state/local) are not overburdened in addressing a cruise line-based COVID-19 outbreak (though collaborative decision-making with federal agencies such as CDC on the specifics of a debarkation may be appropriate). The Panel also emphasizes the importance of timely and accurate contact tracing, testing, and other surveillance methods on the ship. If test results are not available rapidly or contact tracing takes a significant amount of time, precious time will be lost in identifying other persons who should be quarantined, and the scope of an outbreak may not be reliably determined.

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Again, these are not specific plans or procedures, but recommendations.  The mention that "Specifically, full-scale debarkation plans" shows that the Healthy Sail Panel acknowledges that ship or company specific detailed plans need to be made from their recommendations.  No acknowledgement from the cruise lines have shown that they have done this (and that would be a PR win for them).  And, the problem is that the "port planning" needs to include agreements with the local port authority, the state and possibly local health department, and signed contracts with medical transportation, health care facilities, and accommodations providers.  

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7 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

Again, these are not specific plans or procedures, but recommendations.  The mention that "Specifically, full-scale debarkation plans" shows that the Healthy Sail Panel acknowledges that ship or company specific detailed plans need to be made from their recommendations.  No acknowledgement from the cruise lines have shown that they have done this (and that would be a PR win for them).  And, the problem is that the "port planning" needs to include agreements with the local port authority, the state and possibly local health department, and signed contracts with medical transportation, health care facilities, and accommodations providers.  

 

You are correct. 

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, HBCcruiser said:

Sadly it seems you are correct. The CDC does not want us cruising anytime soon it seems. That Don's Vacations guy on YouTube put a video out about this today. He was not happy about it. I guess all we can do is hope for now.

Edited by skywonder
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