CDC issues new guidelines for cruise lines, cleaning surfaces

Coronavirus

HONOLULU (KHON2) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the next phase of technical guidance for cruise lines, requiring that they establish COVID-19 prevention agreements at ports where they intend to operate.

The agreements would include implementing routine testing of crew and developing plans incorporating vaccination strategies to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread by crew and passengers.

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Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the next phase of technical guidance under the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order (CSO) requiring cruise lines to establish agreements at ports where they intend to operate, implement routine testing of crew, and develop plans incorporating vaccination strategies to reduce the risk of introduction and spread of COVID-19 by crew and passengers.

This phase, the second of a Conditional Sailing Order issued in October 2020, provides technical instructions on:

  • Increasing from weekly to daily the reporting frequency of COVID-19 cases and illnesses.
  • Implementing routine testing of all crew based on each ship’s color status.
  • Updating the color-coding system used to classify ships’ status with respect to COVID-19.
  • Decreasing the time needed for a “red” ship to become “green” from 28 to 14 days based on the availability of onboard testing, routine screening testing protocols, and daily reporting.
  • Creating planning materials for agreements that port authorities and local health authorities must approve to ensure cruise lines have the necessary infrastructure in place to manage an outbreak of COVID-19 on their ships to include healthcare capacity and housing to isolate infected people and quarantine those who are exposed.
  • Establishing a plan and timeline for vaccination of crew and port personnel.

In addition to establishing new guidance for cruise lines, the CDC is also easing guidelines for cleaning surfaces.

The center says regular cleaning with soap or detergent is effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19, but if there is a suspected or confirmed coronavirus case in your household, additional disinfection is highly recommended within 24 hours.

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