MSC Cruises has provided Cruise Hive with the latest statement which includes the ship being allowed to make her port of call in Corfu:
MSC Opera today – Thursday 5 March – docked as scheduled at the port of Corfu, Greece.
The MSC Cruises’ ship has 1,579 passengers and 723 crew onboard; a total of 2,302. All were allowed to disembark, as planned.
At no time have passengers or crew been quarantined and all were able to freely make use of the ship’s facilities and restaurants before it departed yesterday from Piraeus in Greece for Corfu.
Health officials in Corfu earlier boarded the ship after it berthed, a common maritime practice, to review the ship’s full medical records and as was the case yesterday in Piraeus, deemed the vessel needed no further health measures beyond the ship’s existing strict preventatitve health measures.
Greek authorities yesterday in the port of Piraeus completed an assessement of the vessel and gave it permission to sail to Corfu.
Passengers and crew remained onboard the ship yesterday for three hours while officials conducted a review of the vessel’s full medical records.
The check was to assess if any additional onboard health measures should be put in place following reports that a passenger who had disembarked the ship six days ago had tested positive for COVID-19 coronavirus two days after returning to Austria via Northern Italy.
There is no reported illness today, nor yesterday, among any of the 2,302 passengers and crew.
Cruise passengers enjoying their vacation were told to get back onboard after a guest on the previous voyage was tested positive for the deadly coronavirus.
MSC Opera Precaution Due to Coronavirus
The coronavirus which is officially named COVID-19 continues to impact the cruise industry and in the latest developments, a man from the MSC Opera cruise ship has tested positive for the virus.
An Austrian man who disembarked the MSC cruise ship in Genoa, Italy on February 28 later tested positive for COVID-19. He first embarked on the vessel for the Mediterranean on February 17, 2020, and was fine during the voyage. He was tested as positive on March 3.
MSC Cruises released the following statement:
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 13:00 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.
When the MSC Opera visited Piraeus, Greece today guests who were already ashore were called back to the ship as a precaution. All guests had to remain onboard, there are no cases of the virus onboard which important to know.
While the cruise line worked with authorities providing details of the former passenger and travel history the ship was later allowed to continue on its voyage at around 1:00 PM. The ship is sailing to its next port of call in Corfu, Greece as part of its 11-day cruise from Genoa.
There are also no crew members or passengers with any flu-like symptoms and there is not expected to be any further impact on the cruise. MSC continues to implement strict health measures to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus.