Norovirus outbreak ship back home (BBC News)

SN NewsCaster
2nd April 2010, 15:50
A cruise ship at the centre of a suspected outbreak of norovirus returns to the UK.

More from BBC News... (http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/news/int/search/news%2Bsport/ship/-/2/hi/uk_news/england/hampshire/8600903.stm)

dmor319
2nd April 2010, 16:07
I was on the Franconia in the late sixties. We cruised the Caribbean in the winter then New york Burmude in the summers. I do not remember anyone getting sick. or on seasick.
Regards
Dave Morris Vindi60

Ian6
2nd April 2010, 17:22
Carnival have a well developed sense of how to keep profits afloat even if they aren't as good at public relations.
Disembarking passengers interviewed on the BBC News this lunch time complained, not so much about being violently ill on the cruise, but at being charged 1,500 for hospitalisation on board!
When P and O Cruises were part of P and O.S.N. Co passengers were charged for medical services but not at this extortionate rate - or one suspects where some blame must attach to onboard hygiene.
Perhaps Pompeyfan will comment.
Ian

Tony Breach
2nd April 2010, 21:56
Logically it seems one can die for free with P & O, living is extra. Euthanasia cruises next? I'll be in the bar!

Pompeyfan
3rd April 2010, 11:55
Carnival have a well developed sense of how to keep profits afloat even if they aren't as good at public relations.
Disembarking passengers interviewed on the BBC News this lunch time complained, not so much about being violently ill on the cruise, but at being charged 1,500 for hospitalisation on board!
When P and O Cruises were part of P and O.S.N. Co passengers were charged for medical services but not at this extortionate rate - or one suspects where some blame must attach to onboard hygiene.
Perhaps Pompeyfan will comment.
Ian

Yes, things have changed, and more so in the past nine months it seems. During my day, although I worked for P&O along with the other nurses and Dispenser the Surgeon charged for his own services, in other words the money went to him. I don't know how it worked, if he paid anything to P&O or who paid Baby Doc. The Surgeon sent out his own bills. The Dispenser made the bills up including tablets used, which were then delivered to cabins, and passengers paid at the Dispensary. But today, they all work for P&O, money's going going direct to P&O added to the overall on board statement, the shipboard account. Everything is added to this account, drinks, shop, the lot paying at the end of the cruise with the finalised statement. On a world cruise, I think they do this in sections. Those who register a card before the cruise will have spending on board deducted automatically. So I assume the medical crew doctors as well are paid by P&O like others working directly for them unless of course it has changed again. I can no longer afford to cruise with them, but when aboard Aurora in 2008, I spent a long time talking to their senior doctor. Then, any passenger who was found to have norovirus was not charged. This seems to have changed. However, even during my time charges were quite high simply because we were not covered by the NHS, only crew were treated free of charge, but they were always given the cheapest possibly medicines!.

One thing as some members will know is that I have said many times that gastroenteritis was just as rife during my time as it is now. We had cases all the time, so much so that in those days, we could make up our own medicine, and we made a lot of it!. People should also understand that there are two main types of gastroenteritis, bacterial and viral. In my day, we always traced the initial source back to crew, galley, food handling and so on again depending on the type. Crew and passengers were then isolated in my place, not in cabins. Norovirus was around in those days, but it was not called that. Today, it is as if there is only one type but there are not only different types of noro, but different other viral types just as bacteria types. Noroviruses are of the Caliciviridae family and are very contagious, but cruise companies blame passengers totally now for bringing it aboard. The senior doctor I spoke to blamed them, and seemed surprised when I told him that during my era, we always traced it to crew. But with the medical department as it is now, it is not possible in my opinion for them to check crew and the galley like we did or indeed isolate them despite him basically saying it could not possibly be the fault of crew or food because of the strict measures they took to prevent it. So did we, but we still traced the source. On board hygiene these days from what I saw is very good, cross infection better than hospitals in fact on ships I have been aboard as passenger, but for companies to say it is not their fault is total madness. A crew member working in the galley could be a carrier, or a dodgy batch of shell fish contaminated by sewage.

To blame passengers entirely, then charge them an arm and a leg is adding insult to injury and will never get to the problem, which I doubt they will do anyway. I left the sea 35 years ago, and it is still as rife then as now. Yes, some passengers are very arrogant. They do not wash their hands after going to the loo, then handle things that others handle. But you must put your hand in your mouth to catch it or something they touched in your mouth. This is not the bubonic plague. Yes, it is contagious, but soap and water will kill the virus, as will some, but not all hand gels. Alcohol based gels will not kill it. Fred Olsen use a soapy type gel like shaving foam. Basically, if not within the food itself, it is down to basic hygiene both crew and passenger to prevent the spread of gastroenteritis viral or bacterial. That is how people in my trade avoided catching these things because I have been exposed to just about every dangerous pathogen going. If these things were that easy to catch, I would have been dead years ago.(==D)

It will be interesting to see if there are any more outbreaks aboard Oceana with a new passenger list. She is on a two day cruise, so passengers may be home before they get it, so I suppose the next cruise will be more telling. But if passengers currently on board who embarked yesterday go down with it, they would have almost certainly brought it on board due entirely to timing because symptoms of viral gastroenteritis usually begin one to two days following infection.

David