Sunday, May 10, 2009

Think of them as floating petri dishes

Well there may be an upside to our decline in cruise ship traffic this year, there will be less chance of those of us shore bound residents coming into contact with unwitting carriers of the A H1N1 virus.

The Seattle Post Intelligencer has an article posted to its website today that has traced the path of H1N1 to Alaska, after a crew member on the Serenade of the Seas cruise ship came down with the virus while in transit to Alaskan waters.

The female crew member of the Royal Caribbean ship, became ill May 2 while sailing from San Francisco northward. The woman was isolated two days later and was treated with antiviral medication, subsequent testing while docked in Ketchikan provided a negative result, attributed to the quick response of ship board doctors who isolated her and began treatment with Tamiflu immediately.

With that negative being reported by the Alaska health agencies, state tourism officials found no reason to keep tourists from coming ashore on the various ports of call that the vessel is scheduled to make.

Though they do suggest that it highlights the challenges to the tourism industry when these sudden outbreaks of flu show up.

Keep an ear out for the sniffles and sneezes...

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