WASHINGTON, DC (13 FEB 2020)—Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the leading voice of the global cruise industry, issued today the following statement in response to recent developments concerning COVID-19 and its impact on the global cruise industry.
Given the evolving nature of the ongoing COVID-19—and based upon prevailing guidance from global health authorities, including the World Health Organization (WHO)—CLIA Members have adopted the following enhanced protocols for ocean-going guests and crew who have recently traveled from or through China, including Hong Kong and Macau. These enhanced policies, which are in effect as of 7 February 2020, build upon those which were implemented on 31 January 2020 and continue to allow for informed decisions on a case-by-case basis whether a guest or crewmember will be permitted to board.
CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who have traveled from, visited or transited via airports in China, including Hong Kong and Macau, within 14 days before embarkation.
CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who, within 14 days before embarkation, have had close contact with, or helped care for, anyone suspected or diagnosed as having COVID-19, or who is currently subject to health monitoring for possible exposure to COVID-19.
CLIA Members are to conduct preboarding screening necessary to effectuate these prevention measures. Enhanced screening and initial medical support are to be provided, as needed, to any persons exhibiting symptoms of suspected COVID-19.
In coordination with cruise lines, medical experts and regulators around the world, CLIA and its member lines will continue to closely monitor for new developments related to the coronavirus and will modify these policies as necessary with the utmost consideration for the health and safety of passengers and crew. With strict measures in place, as guided by national and international health authorities, CLIA and its member lines do not believe restrictions on the movement of ships are justified.
Importantly, the cruise industry is one of the most well-equipped and experienced when it comes to managing and monitoring health conditions of those onboard, with outbreak prevention and response measures in place year-round. Furthermore, ships must be fitted with onboard medical facilities, with shipboard medical professionals available around the clock, 24/7, to provide initial medical care in the event of illness and help prevent disease transmission.”