Published: Thu, February 20, 2020
Global News | By Blake Casey

Seoul to bar entry of foreigners aboard infected cruise ship in Japan

Seoul to bar entry of foreigners aboard infected cruise ship in Japan

The Diamond Princess, operated by Carnival Corp, was quarantined on arrival in the port of Yokohama since February 3, after a man who disembarked in Hong Kong before it travelled to Japan was diagnosed with the virus.

Passengers who tested negative for coronavirus and had no symptoms still had to have their body temperature checked before leaving.

The CDC said all passengers and crew have been placed under travel restrictions and that the Americans among them are prevented from returning to the US for at least 14 days after they disembark.

"It's our duty to take care [of] our Overseas Filipinos wherever they are". On Wednesday, several individuals said they had been encouraged by the health ministry to carry on with life as usual.

"There are sometimes environments in which disease can spread in a more efficient way", said Michael Ryan, executive director of the WHO's health emergencies program.

The ship, which some experts have called a flawless virus incubator, has become the site of the most infections outside of China, where the illness named COVID-19 emerged late previous year. The number of infections among those aboard increased by 88 on Tuesday, bringing the total to 542. Those who develop symptoms of the COVID-19 virus will be transported to hospital for treatment. There were another 12 Israelis on the ship who so far are not known to have contracted the disease. "There were people getting infected on that ship", he said.

"They will be obviously in a quarantine arrangement there for the full 14 days before they are able to be allowed to return to their home towns".

They will first be tested to make sure they are not infected with the deadly virus, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Tuesday.

McKenna said the couple have already filled out paperwork with their current health information and are being told they'll be screened no fewer than three times before the plane departs. "The medical officer", he said, "was not protecting herself". They will return home separately.

The viral illness that emerged previous year in central China has sickened tens of thousands of people, but the 542 cases confirmed among the ship's 3,711 original passengers and crew are the most anywhere outside of China.

Diamond Princess cruise

More and more governments say they will evacuate their citizens after they leave the ship.

"There was no single professional infection control person inside the ship and there was nobody in charge of infection prevention as a professional".

South Korea has asked Japan to provide the list of passengers, the official said. Those who remain will have to undergo a new quarantine that will not begin until all the passengers have left the ship. They will be kept in a separate unit and monitored by medical staff assigned exclusively for that objective, the ministry added.

The seven spent two weeks aboard the Diamond Princess, a cruise ship at anchor in Yokohama Bay, after the virus, called COVID-19, was discovered on board as the vessel was en route to Japan. "They faced enhanced risk relative to passengers who stayed in their rooms", says Charles Chiu, a professor of laboratory medicine at the University of California, San Francisco.

Passengers have been stuck on board the Diamond Princess for two weeks, with 18-year-old Australian Tehya Pfeffer previously telling they've been confined to their cabins.

None have tested positive for the coronavirus.

The United States evacuated more than 300 people over the weekend who are now in quarantine in the U.S. for another 14 days.

One crew member said Princess Cruises, the company that operates Diamond Princess, has informed them that they will be moving into rooms with balconies, a welcome change from their below-deck, windowless cabins that they share with up to two others.

Some 180 citizens and permanent residents had taken up the federal government's offer of a seat on the evacuation flight, which left Haneda Airport near Yokohama in the early hours of Thursday morning.

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