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CDC Open to USA cruise return this Summer


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1 hour ago, MarkWiltonM said:

The Miami Herald article says the CDC will require cruise lines "to test all passengers and crew using PCR tests on embarkation and debarkation day." If a cruise ship has, for example, 2,000 passengers embarking and another 2,000 disembarking on a single day (plus crew), that's 4,000 blood tests that would have to be done in a 24-hour period. How many of the crew would be trained and qualified to extract blood from passengers' arms? And how long would it take? There's no way a cruise ship could jab that many arms in a single day, aside from the issue of having the equipment to analyze the tests. I'm sure that's why Del Rio is arguing that if everyone is vaccinated you don't have to do the testing.

 

9 hours ago, Ken the cruiser said:

@noclor @TeeRickor anyone else that might actually know, is it even possible for a cruise ship's medical staff given the proper equipment able to process the type of PCR test the CDC is suggesting in the Miami Herald article I mentioned in post #42 above?

The short answer to your questions are no... and yes.

Upfron, I read all the “medical” portions of the original CDC blueprint, and most of the medical in the update. My bias since reading that is that CDC stated what they think is necessary, even though that was impossible in November. None of that has been rescinded, just reiterated. In terms of having it happen, now it may not be impossible, just improbable and really expensive. ( and I’m not even going to get into the agreements with shoreside med centers, additional expertise of physician’s onboard, it even talks about vaccination in taxi drivers).

These tests are NOT blood tests, frankly it would actually be simpler if they were. To Nick’s point about pooling, he’s describing pooling, that would help. I thought the CDC order said antigen test on embarkation, PCR for contact tracing onboard and PCR on disembarkation. If the CDC would define “day” as 24 hours, then a system could be set up now to antigen test everyone at pier or maybe even collect at hotels, PCR and isolate onboard. Then the night before disembarkation, self-swab or spit, and put samples out with luggage. Then the samples would be run ashore through the night for shoreside labs. There are lots of labs now looking for business and the instruments and reagents to use on the ship could be obtained (unlike back in the fall).

All of this assumes that ships AND the port itself are running way below capacity - like 2 ships total turn around on Saturday and 2 on Sunday. So 8 total from south Florida, plus shorter midweek turns.

See why it would be improbable? Why spend all that money IF the pandemic gets declared over?

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On 4/7/2021 at 8:48 AM, terrydtx said:

Apparently Oceania Cruises doesn't think their parent company's (NCL) request to the CDC to start cruising by July 4th is  going to happen. I got this from them last night and it says Oceania will not restart cruising until August 1.

Coronavirus Statement - Oceania Cruises

They maybe anticipating logistical problem returning crews to the ships. It will be interesting to see.

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1 hour ago, cangelmd said:

 

The short answer to your questions are no... and yes.

Upfron, I read all the “medical” portions of the original CDC blueprint, and most of the medical in the update. My bias since reading that is that CDC stated what they think is necessary, even though that was impossible in November. None of that has been rescinded, just reiterated. In terms of having it happen, now it may not be impossible, just improbable and really expensive. ( and I’m not even going to get into the agreements with shoreside med centers, additional expertise of physician’s onboard, it even talks about vaccination in taxi drivers).

These tests are NOT blood tests, frankly it would actually be simpler if they were. To Nick’s point about pooling, he’s describing pooling, that would help. I thought the CDC order said antigen test on embarkation, PCR for contact tracing onboard and PCR on disembarkation. If the CDC would define “day” as 24 hours, then a system could be set up now to antigen test everyone at pier or maybe even collect at hotels, PCR and isolate onboard. Then the night before disembarkation, self-swab or spit, and put samples out with luggage. Then the samples would be run ashore through the night for shoreside labs. There are lots of labs now looking for business and the instruments and reagents to use on the ship could be obtained (unlike back in the fall).

All of this assumes that ships AND the port itself are running way below capacity - like 2 ships total turn around on Saturday and 2 on Sunday. So 8 total from south Florida, plus shorter midweek turns.

See why it would be improbable? Why spend all that money IF the pandemic gets declared over?

I am also wondering if ships can PCR test their waste stream for COVID?  This in bulk testing is what a lot of universities are doing for their dorms.  Maybe by deck number to narrow it down?  This might be a quick and easy way to screen the entire ship for COVID on a daily basis.  If a deck (or corridor?) from passengers or crew comes up positive they can narrow it down from there.

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1 hour ago, cangelmd said:

 

The short answer to your questions are no... and yes.

Upfron, I read all the “medical” portions of the original CDC blueprint, and most of the medical in the update. My bias since reading that is that CDC stated what they think is necessary, even though that was impossible in November. None of that has been rescinded, just reiterated. In terms of having it happen, now it may not be impossible, just improbable and really expensive. ( and I’m not even going to get into the agreements with shoreside med centers, additional expertise of physician’s onboard, it even talks about vaccination in taxi drivers).

These tests are NOT blood tests, frankly it would actually be simpler if they were. To Nick’s point about pooling, he’s describing pooling, that would help. I thought the CDC order said antigen test on embarkation, PCR for contact tracing onboard and PCR on disembarkation. If the CDC would define “day” as 24 hours, then a system could be set up now to antigen test everyone at pier or maybe even collect at hotels, PCR and isolate onboard. Then the night before disembarkation, self-swab or spit, and put samples out with luggage. Then the samples would be run ashore through the night for shoreside labs. There are lots of labs now looking for business and the instruments and reagents to use on the ship could be obtained (unlike back in the fall).

All of this assumes that ships AND the port itself are running way below capacity - like 2 ships total turn around on Saturday and 2 on Sunday. So 8 total from south Florida, plus shorter midweek turns.

See why it would be improbable? Why spend all that money IF the pandemic gets declared over?

in the EU the lines used antigen tests at embarkation. Since they do have somewhat of a false positive rate, anyone that tested positive was then given a pcr test to confirm.

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3 hours ago, MarkWiltonM said:

The Miami Herald article says the CDC will require cruise lines "to test all passengers and crew using PCR tests on embarkation and debarkation day." If a cruise ship has, for example, 2,000 passengers embarking and another 2,000 disembarking on a single day (plus crew), that's 4,000 blood tests that would have to be done in a 24-hour period. How many of the crew would be trained and qualified to extract blood from passengers' arms? And how long would it take? There's no way a cruise ship could jab that many arms in a single day, aside from the issue of having the equipment to analyze the tests. I'm sure that's why Del Rio is arguing that if everyone is vaccinated you don't have to do the testing.

PCR is not a blood test. It is a saliva or nasal swab.

 

 

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16 minutes ago, nocl said:

PCR is not a blood test. It is a saliva or nasal swab.

 

 

And by the way, I have a large, and Very sensitive nose, and when the stick that 2ft piece of lumber up the poor thing, I wish it was a Blood test!

 

den

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Ok, let's say this weekend the CDC agrees to allowing cruising again in the US with the rule that all crew members and passengers MUST be vaccinated.  The logistics of it are tremendous.  Unless all the crew gets the J&J vaccine, it would be at least 8 weeks before everyone was fully vaccinated.  I'm taking into account some difficulties in getting the vaccines to the people, unless the cruise lines have a plan.

 

Once vaccinated, they'd need to get the people to the ships, get the ships ready for cruising, re-train, get food and supplies loaded, do a shake down cruise to make sure everything is operating properly, and then set up the ships for social distancing.  NOT an easy process.  Optimistically, that would be another 6-8 weeks.  So now we're in August.

 

BUT let's assume the cruise lines are already "ahead of the game".  They have the ships 100% ready and compliant.  They have the majority of crew members vaccinated.  Even assuming all of that, they still need to load the ships up, re-train people, and get the people to the ships.  At best, we're looking at mid-June.

 

I just don't see it.  No way cruising begins again in the summer.  I might be wrong, but there's so much to overcome.  This is why I keep saying October.  And that would only happen if the cruise lines are doing everything they can to get ready to go as quickly as possible.

 

Cruising can and probably will begin again this year, but most likely in the Fall.  

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1 minute ago, K.T.B. said:

Ok, let's say this weekend the CDC agrees to allowing cruising again in the US with the rule that all crew members and passengers MUST be vaccinated.  The logistics of it are tremendous.  Unless all the crew gets the J&J vaccine, it would be at least 8 weeks before everyone was fully vaccinated.  I'm taking into account some difficulties in getting the vaccines to the people, unless the cruise lines have a plan.

 

Once vaccinated, they'd need to get the people to the ships, get the ships ready for cruising, re-train, get food and supplies loaded, do a shake down cruise to make sure everything is operating properly, and then set up the ships for social distancing.  NOT an easy process.  Optimistically, that would be another 6-8 weeks.  So now we're in August.

 

BUT let's assume the cruise lines are already "ahead of the game".  They have the ships 100% ready and compliant.  They have the majority of crew members vaccinated.  Even assuming all of that, they still need to load the ships up, re-train people, and get the people to the ships.  At best, we're looking at mid-June.

 

I just don't see it.  No way cruising begins again in the summer.  I might be wrong, but there's so much to overcome.  This is why I keep saying October.  And that would only happen if the cruise lines are doing everything they can to get ready to go as quickly as possible.

 

Cruising can and probably will begin again this year, but most likely in the Fall.  

Kevin you are using too much logic here!😀

June-July for non-US cruises like St Martin on Millennium,

I am still thinking the current CDC date (November) in the US will hold.

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, K.T.B. said:

Ok, let's say this weekend the CDC agrees to allowing cruising again in the US with the rule that all crew members and passengers MUST be vaccinated.  The logistics of it are tremendous.  Unless all the crew gets the J&J vaccine, it would be at least 8 weeks before everyone was fully vaccinated.  I'm taking into account some difficulties in getting the vaccines to the people, unless the cruise lines have a plan.

 

Once vaccinated, they'd need to get the people to the ships, get the ships ready for cruising, re-train, get food and supplies loaded, do a shake down cruise to make sure everything is operating properly, and then set up the ships for social distancing.  NOT an easy process.  Optimistically, that would be another 6-8 weeks.  So now we're in August.

 

BUT let's assume the cruise lines are already "ahead of the game".  They have the ships 100% ready and compliant.  They have the majority of crew members vaccinated.  Even assuming all of that, they still need to load the ships up, re-train people, and get the people to the ships.  At best, we're looking at mid-June.

 

I just don't see it.  No way cruising begins again in the summer.  I might be wrong, but there's so much to overcome.  This is why I keep saying October.  And that would only happen if the cruise lines are doing everything they can to get ready to go as quickly as possible.

 

Cruising can and probably will begin again this year, but most likely in the Fall.  

 

I'm firmly in the camp that the cruiselines haven't done much to help themselves which many would argue, but if they wanted to give the impression that they are full steam ahead on a restart, they would at least be more transparent with their intent and plans. The silence and the repeated ask to simply drop the CSO makes me think there really is no plan. Don't they already have plans in place for these new cruises Caribbean ports? At a high level, why not adapt those plans to the US ports and provide the CDC an actual plan instead of threats. 

 

There's also an element of question around if they can even get crew. Since many of these people have had a year to adjust to 'home' life and moved on from life onboard, simply finding crew to work may be another issue. I don't foresee hearing anything about that at all since it would potentially send their stock price down.  

 

Edited by Jeremiah1212
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33 minutes ago, K.T.B. said:

BUT let's assume the cruise lines are already "ahead of the game".  They have the ships 100% ready and compliant.  They have the majority of crew members vaccinated.  Even assuming all of that, they still need to load the ships up, re-train people, and get the people to the ships.  At best, we're looking at mid-June.

 

Celebrity might actually be doing that now while the Edge, Silhouette, Apex and Reflection are currently ported in Barbados and the Millennium is ported in St Maarten. Maybe they're hiring crew from some nearby Caribbean islands who have be able to get vaccinated and training them once onboard. I have no idea, but as you should all know me by now, I am an optimist. 🙃

 

CELEBRITY EDGE Current Location (cruisemapper.com)

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Posted (edited)

Agreed. 

 

I believe the cruise industry is making a calculated business decision that operating margins cant be maintained during the active Covid19 outbreak.

 

Therefor, all along the real plan has been to mothball the ships, maintain essential employees working on PR and finance tasks, raise cheap capital (readily available right now at almost 0%) to fund the 'hybernation', make a few 'token PR efforts' to give the appearance to loyal customers that they care, stall demands for refunds, and appear that they actually want to restart and deliver their promised service.  However, they are simultaniously angling with 'friendly, but gullable politicians' to place the anger and blame for no cruises on a boogyman, the CDC for their 'evil big government work stoppage.'

 

Its pretty clear to me. CDC in their clumsy scientist and MD way, with poor PR skills stubles right into their plan by trying to work the problem that the industry doesnt want worked.  They have no intention of medically safe cruises. They werent disease safe over the last decade and they wont be when they restart. People will cruise with viruses and sneeze on our buffet food.  Folks will get sick on cruises and some who aree vulnerable will die.  I hope vaccines keep this down to an acceptable level, as we all do.   It has always been this way, just not super transparent. New viruses will appear. I still deal with a bad fungus I got from a comforter on a Princess ship (could smell the fungus after a sweaty night, had to argue to get it swapped out, rash appeared in my armpits, MD on ship would do nothing, so used topical cream and after weeks it was ok, but came back a few times).   We've all seen ambulances dockside early morning.  Its part of the deal.  Old folks cruise, old folks pass.

 

Are the risks worth the fun?  Possibly.  Skydiving is popular, but we discovered our local skydiving provider has had 50 deaths.  Its up to people to decide, but I predict cruising restarts when pandemic is declared 'over', and there will be political pressure to do this by end of year.  My prediction is Cruises restart in 2022.

Edited by Pizzasteve
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Posted (edited)

What a minute, they have not been getting capital at near 0%, one (big) set of financing was at over 8% and they had to put up the newest ships as collateral.   Looks like there was just this at 5.5%:  MIAMI, March 29, 2021 Royal Caribbean Group ( RCL ) today announced that it has closed its private offering of $1,500,000,000 aggregate principal amount of 5.50% senior unsecured notes due 2028 . The Notes will mature on April 1, 2028 unless earlier redeemed or repurchased.

 

Edited by rmalbers
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I still keep wondering if part of the CDC treatment of the cruise industry isn't because of the way the outbreaks spread so quickly on board, and how they were handled onboard,  and then things like the Eclipse 'situation', I'm not sure the CDC was to happy about how that went down, along with other ships with similar situations.

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, MarkWiltonM said:

 

A PCR test is a blood test, not a nasal swab.

Do not know where you get your "facts" but the PCR is a nasal swab test.

 

PCR Test for COVID-19: What it Is, How its Done, What the Results Mean (clevelandclinic.org)

 

Here is the first paragraph from this article.

"The nose swab PCR test for COVID-19 is the most accurate and reliable test for diagnosing COVID-19. A positive test means you likely have COVID-19. A negative test means you probably did not have COVID-19 at the time of the test. Get tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19."

Edited by terrydtx
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2 hours ago, TeeRick said:

Kevin you are using too much logic here!😀

June-July for non-US cruises like St Martin on Millennium,

I am still thinking the current CDC date (November) in the US will hold.

Especially if the cruise lines focus on trying to get the order dropped instead of working with the CDC to actually get sailing back under it.

 

With Florida filing suit the correspondence between the CDC and the cruise lines should be part of the case if it gets that far. Then maybe we can see for sure if the cruise lines have been trying to work with the CDC to get cruising or not.

 

I would much rather sail on a cruise if the cruiselines had an approved plan from the CDC. That way I would know that the cruise line would not be able to change what it was doing, without approval, between the time of booking and the time of the cruise.

 

As it sits now on the Caribbean cruises it is far to fuzzy and subject to change.

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Posted (edited)
36 minutes ago, MarkWiltonM said:

 

A PCR test is a blood test, not a nasal swab.

nope antigen testing use blood samples, though usually a finger stick not a blood draw. PCR uses nasal swabs or saliva samples.

Edited by nocl
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42 minutes ago, rmalbers said:

I still keep wondering if part of the CDC treatment of the cruise industry isn't because of the way the outbreaks spread so quickly on board, and how they were handled onboard,  and then things like the Eclipse 'situation', I'm not sure the CDC was to happy about how that went down, along with other ships with similar situations.

The CDCs reasoning is explained in the order. Lists specific examples and studies.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, nocl said:

nope antigen testing use blood samples, though usually a finger stick not a blood draw. PCR uses nasal swabs or saliva samples.

 

My mistake. Apologies. I have had PCR blood tests for other viruses (hepatitis, etc.) and assumed it was the same for Covid-19.

 

Even so, my original point of the CDC requiring/expecting a cruise ship to perform thousands of PCR tests a day with rapid turnaround is absurd.

Edited by MarkWiltonM
typo
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3 hours ago, MarkWiltonM said:

 

A PCR test is a blood test, not a nasal swab.

Not for Covid. You can do PCR on blood, but not Covid.

You cannot even get Covid from a blood transfusion.

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8 hours ago, TeeRick said:

I am also wondering if ships can PCR test their waste stream for COVID?  This in bulk testing is what a lot of universities are doing for their dorms.  Maybe by deck number to narrow it down?  This might be a quick and easy way to screen the entire ship for COVID on a daily basis.  If a deck (or corridor?) from passengers or crew comes up positive they can narrow it down from there.

Possibly? Best I know, the stool testing is not available for clinical use, so I don’t that much about it other than what’s been in the news. I think buried somewhere in the CDC plan, it says the lab testing has to meet CLIA standards, but that would be for patient treatment, not what is essentially a public health function.

 I agree with you, although I don’t know where you posted this- no sailing from US until CDC order expires in November, just too many practical complications 

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2 minutes ago, Ken the cruiser said:

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but this is not a PCR test from the way it sounds.

You are correct.  I incorrectly linked the test with the PCR reference in the article. 

 

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