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Feb 11, 2020

Influenza Patients on Cruise Ship at Harvest Caye Didn’t Disembark

The Ministry of Health says that a cruise ship that docked at Harvest Caye has been cleared. The ship was carrying three passengers who were exhibiting flu-like symptoms. Those passengers, according to the Ministry of Health, were in quarantine on the ship and didn’t disembark. The Ministry says that a medical doctor was assigned to review the matter on its behalf. Here’s more from Director of Health Services Doctor Marvin Manzanero.


Marvin Manzanero

Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services

“What usually happens, when anybody comes off the ship there is a manifest that is delivered to the public health inspector. When he saw the manifest, there was an immediate concern that came up because three passengers onboard the ship were documented as having respiratory illness. So, the usual procedure is that we have to get all the details of what has happened and make a determination based on that. The initial call, because I would routinely not get called for a situation like this, is because it would seem that whoever was dealing with the ship on that end didn’t want to provide all the information as requested. So, we had to intervene. We sent somebody else; we sent a medical doctor and then the full details of the case is under isolation inside the ship were revealed to us. Three cases who had tested positive for influenza were onboard the ship. We further asked if anybody had been in mainland China or any of the affected areas and there is no epidemiological link, so the ship was cleared. Those three passengers are in isolation on the ship, so they didn’t come onboard.”


Isani Cayetano

“Were they then, the other passengers, that is, allowed to disembark and move around the island?”


Dr. Marvin Manzanero

“Yes. The ship normally has its own medical staff; isolation, quarantine units. And prior to anybody coming onboard, they would usually go through the process of their own internal clearing before it happens when they are allowed to come on board. So, that had been done and everybody was allowed to come off, whoever wanted to come off then.”

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