Published: Sun, February 16, 2020
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

COVID-19: Americans evacuated from Japanese cruise ship face 2nd quarantine

COVID-19: Americans evacuated from Japanese cruise ship face 2nd quarantine

By yesterday, an additional 67 people on the cruise ship had tested positive for coronavirus, bringing the total to 285 people infected out of 3,500 passengers and crew.

A bus leaves a port where the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship is docked Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, in Yokohama, near Tokyo.

Japanese authorities say more than 280 passengers on the ship have been confirmed to be infected.

"This was too much for Japan, and they shouldn't have had to bear the burden", she added.

The ship is now being held in the Japanese port of Yokohama near Tokyo.

Meanwhile the first group of United States citizens onboard the coronavirus-stricken Diamond Princess cruise ship have been allowed to leave.

Canada, South Korea, Italy and Hong Kong announced they would also arrange charter flights.

Concerns mounted that authorities in Cambodia, including US Embassy officials, had allowed passengers infected by the coronavirus to disembark from the Westerdam cruise ship and depart for other cities and countries around the world after Malaysian officials confirmed that a second exam for an ill passenger returned positive. She thinks people testing positive for the virus probably contracted it before the quarantine period began, but says the US government should have sent experts at the start to assess whether the quarantine on the ship was effective. Anyone showing symptoms will be transferred to the Japanese healthcare system.

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At least 355 people on-board the Diamond Princess tested positive for the virus, with 137 of those cases being newly reported Sunday afternoon, World Health Organization said. "I suppose we could have been taken out and shipped home in a sterile way, but it wasn't done".

The U.S. government's assessment of the situation on the ship also appears to have changed.

Besides the cases on the cruise ship, Japan has reported 55 other cases. The Diamond Princess is reported to have around 3,700 passengers and crew.About half of the passengers are from Japan, according to Reuters. Once they return to the United States, the passengers will be housed separately from the evacuees from Hubei province.

"Having hoped that three, four days from now, I'd be getting on a plane and this would be all behind me, now facing another 14-day quarantine on a military institution where the conditions - I imagine they're obviously going to be more sanitary, but they're going to be vastly different - it is frightening", said Spencer Fehrenbacher, 29, a USA citizen whose family immigrated to Canada in 2016.

Mi said the proportion of confirmed cases who were critically ill had fallen to 21.6% on Saturday, from 32.4% on January 27. It comes as China's National Health Commission announced the death toll inside the country had risen to 1,665, with 68,500 infections.

Upshur said if the quarantine is necessary, it's important for the government to ensure proper supports for those in isolation because of the known psychological harms caused by such restrictive measures. All but four of the new deaths were in Hubei. Passengers were screened by Cambodian health officials before they were allowed to disembark. At the time, Health Minister Yaakov Litzman said the ban would remain in effect until further notice and that Israelis who visited China will need to be quarantined at home for two weeks.

In a statement, Global Affairs Canada said the government "has deployed three officials from the Public Health Agency of Canada to Japan".

According to Fauci, it would be helpful for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to be in China.

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