By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
In an update on the gastrointestinal outbreak onboard Princess Cruises’ Caribbean Princess February 2–16, 2020 voyage, federal health officials are reporting an increase in GI cases since the last report.
Of the 3,035 passengers onboard, 299 illnesses are now being reported, or 9.9 percent of vacationers. Another 21 crewmembers have been sickened.
The etiology of this outbreak is still not known and passengers/crew are experiencing symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea.
According to passengers onboard this voyage, the ship turned around yesterday at 10.30pm and is now returning to Fort Lauderdale with an anticipated arrival is 13th Feb, three days early.
Another passenger said, “There are a lot more cases than what they are reporting” and “We had 7 of 8 people sick with the virus”.
Norovirus is a highly contagious viral illness that often goes by other names, such as viral gastroenteritis, stomach flu, and food poisoning.
The symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and some stomach cramping. Sometimes people additionally have a low-grade fever, chills,headache, muscle aches, and a general sense of tiredness. The illness often begins suddenly, and the infected person may feel very sick. In most people, the illness is self-limiting with symptoms lasting for about 1 or 2 days. In general, children experience more vomiting than adults do.
Norovirus is spread person to person particularly in crowded, closed places. Norovirus is typically spread through contaminated food and water, touching surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus and then putting your hand or fingers in your mouth and close contact with someone who is vomiting or has diarrhea.
The CDC VSP conducts investigations if 3.0% of the ship’s passengers or crew members have GI illness, OR if an unusual GI illness pattern or characteristic is found (even if the illness rate is less than 3%).