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Coronavirus: MSC Opera sailing as planned following passenger testing positive

MSC CRUISES
photo_camera MSC Opera's 21-night Dubai itinerary has been cancelled

According to MSC Cruises’ latest statement, MSC Opera has been given permission to continue sailing by the Greek authorities after being held briefly off the coast of Greece following a passenger on a previous voyage testing positive for coronavirus (Covid-19).

The man, who is of Austrian nationality, had travelled on board the ship across East Mediterranean between February 17 and 28 before being tested positive for the virus on 3 March.

Reportedly, all passengers and crew member were told to remain on board “as a precautionary measure” until further notice, but an MSC Cruises spokesperson said that the ship is “currently sailing as planned”.

A spokesman for MSC Cruises said: ”Health Authorities in Austria today informed us that a passenger of Austrian nationality, who had cruised with us on MSC Opera in the East Mediterranean from 17 to 28 February, tested positive yesterday, 3 March, for Covid-19.

“This passenger returned directly to Austria through northern Italy on 28 February immediately after disembarking from his cruise in Genoa, Italy.

MSC Opera earlier today arrived in Piraeus, Greece, and we promptly informed the Greek Health Authorities about this reported case and asked for their guidelines.

“We requested at the same time that passengers, as a precautionary measure, remained on board while awaiting guidance from the local authorities.

”We shared with the local health authorities the ship’s full medical records as well as the medical and travel history records of the former Austrian passenger.

”The Greek health authorities gave MSC Opera permission around 1pm CET to sail from Piraeus, Greece, and continue its journey to its next scheduled port in Corfu, Greece.

“No additional health measures were required to be taken and the ship is currently sailing as planned.

”There are no passengers or crew members currently on board the ship who have reported any flu-like symptoms. The health and safety of our passengers and crew will always remain our top priority.”

After being alerted by Austrian Health officials, the cruise ship was docked in the port of Piraeus which is located just over five miles from Athens.

Following an assessment by Greek Health officials, the ship was allowed to continue onto its next scheduled stop in Corfu.

Yesterday, CLIA updated its passenger and crew screening measures in response to the outbreak. 

For updated on official travel advice, visit gov.uk.

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