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-   -   NOROVIRUS ON FREEDOM OF THE SEAS (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/royal-caribbean-international/363184-norovirus-freedom-seas.html)

cruiser00 April 5th, 2009 11:11 AM

NOROVIRUS ON FREEDOM OF THE SEAS
 
Just returned from a 7-day cruise (4/5/09) through Western Carib on Freedom of the Seas and the NoroVirus was in full force in the ship. Lots of cruisers were sick and many were quarantined for 48 hours (not allowed to leave their cabins). So many of the staff were sick they had show performers serving breakfast and other staff working double shifts. You couldn't go anywhere without having to wash your hands in Purel and more of the staff spent time wiping down handrails than anything else. It was a BAD experience and Royal Caribbean was so generous in offering quarantined customers a voucher for a small portion of their next cruise on RC -- what a joke. This is the same ship that had a major Norovirus outbreak back in 2006, enough so that the CDC came in to supervise the cleaning of the ship. Not my idea of a vacation.

Robbie H April 5th, 2009 11:37 AM

With around 50 cruises under my belt, have encountered quarantine conditions once. Is it out there (pardon pun)? Yup....do I blame the cruise lines? Nope. I see the boneheads leaving the toilets without ever stopping to wash their paws.

cruiser00 April 5th, 2009 11:58 AM

Boneheads? I guess that must include the staff preparing the food and cleaning the toilets, too (or both).

Campion April 5th, 2009 12:11 PM

I'm sorry, but this poll is utterly pointless. Norovirus is one of, if not the, most common virus after the common cold. If you won't travel on a cruise ship because of it, I suggest you also avoid gas stations, restuarants, and interaction with the public in general.

cruiser00 April 5th, 2009 12:26 PM

You don't have to vote -- but it seems you did!

I wouldn't eat at a restaurant that had a known history of food poisoning or poor health inspection records, so I am just curious to see if a ship's history with NoroVirus is top of mind for anyone when they choose a cruise ship.

I am pretty sure that there is not a cruise line that would ever agree to publish their health records -- hmm?

Campion April 5th, 2009 12:40 PM

Actually, the Dept. of Health requires inspections of the ships, so they they are public record. Not sure where one could find that information, though. In all reality, though, it's in a company's best interest---especially a cruise line---that the passengers safety is the upmost. Their survival depends on it.

Campion April 5th, 2009 12:46 PM

In fact, here's the one for you:

http://wwwn.cdc.gov/vsp/inspectionqu...ction=10717728

cruiser00 April 5th, 2009 01:00 PM

Thanks for the CDC link. I asked two different on-ship RCI mgmt staff if any information like this was available and they both said "we are not obligated to share this information with you" -- I was floored by their arrogance to a parent of a sick kid.

Do you if trip health records are available for each ship? It is my understanding that Freedom of the Seas has had this issue before and has been "scrubbed down" before for NoroVirus outbreaks and even had to shorten cruises because the issue stopped them from being able to leave port until they were cleared by the CDC.

Campion April 5th, 2009 01:06 PM

Probably not on a PER TRIP basis. Although, inspections are done periodically. Also, I'm not sure if a passenger falling ill counts as an "incident."

yellosno April 5th, 2009 01:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cruiser00
Thanks for the CDC link. I asked two different on-ship RCI mgmt staff if any information like this was available and they both said "we are not obligated to share this information with you" -- I was floored by their arrogance to a parent of a sick kid.

Do you if trip health records are available for each ship? It is my understanding that Freedom of the Seas has had this issue before and has been "scrubbed down" before for NoroVirus outbreaks and even had to shorten cruises because the issue stopped them from being able to leave port until they were cleared by the CDC.

I have seen a website that lists incidents by ship which will show you a history, but can't remember how I came across it. Like someone else said, this really is a non-issue. Nearly every ship at sometime has had the norovirus outbreaks.

blueliner April 5th, 2009 01:41 PM

The rule is if more than 3% of a ship is confirmed to have the virus, the cruiseline is required to report the incident to the CDC. This is not to take any punitive measures, but because it allows the CDC to inspect and study the outbreaks. It allows them to study the virus in a contained environment. This virus is very common in the US and is often carried aboard by someone. The incidents of outbreaks are becoming less and less as the cruiselines have instituted measures of sanitation and quarantine to contain the virus.

I don't have any problem with a history of norovirus on any ship. I wash my hands and take measures to protect myself, and I know the cruiselines sanitize and clean their ships after every cruise.

Ron April 5th, 2009 02:21 PM

The dreaded " norovirus " is not something unique to cruise ships. Somewhere along the line, as with many other misconceptions about cruising, someone hung the blame on the cruise industry for people becoming sick with what is called on land, '"stomach flu" and other related illnesses.
When you ask if someone would cruise on a ship that has had the dreaded
" noro ", why not ask would you send your kid to school that has had the same thing? Every year there's many more outbreaks of this at schools, offices, etc. than on all the cruiseships combined. Yet, it's not worthy of national news--maybe a mention by the local news but that's it. Every year at schools, there's outbreaks of something--strep throat, colds, flu, etc. etc.
The schools are cleaned, etc. and the beat goes on. Pity a ship that has a similar problem!
A ship has people confined in close proximity for a week or so. If someone happens to bring the a virus aboard, it quite naturally has an opportunity to be spread and affect several people simply because of this proximity.
The crew cleans as best they can and rightfully so. Some people see this cleaning and view it as some sort of admission of guilt by the cruiseline for the sickness. With regards to some of the crew being sick too, naturally some of the crew will get the illness as they, after all, are the ones handling your dirty utensils, making your soiled beds, cleaning you soiled toilets, and etc.
If everyone aboard the ship practiced the simple task of washing their hands after using the bathroom, scratching their rear, picking their nose, and various other vulgar acts, the threat of the " noro" would drastically be reduced.
Imagine this if you can-- How many people go to Walmart, Krogers, etc.
everyday and handle the carts with dirty hands. They handle money, pick up and sit down items in the store, cough, sneeze, etc. and then someone comes behind them, handles the same cart, the same items, gets some of the same money back in change, etc.
Then a few days later there may be a hundred people sick but no one
connects it to the store--why??--because the hundred that's sick is spread out for miles in all directions and never even thinks they got sick from being in the store. Same thing on a ship except as I said before, people are all close for a few days and the news of " noro " spreads as quickly as the rumor mill can spread it.
With regards to your mentioning of eating at restaurants that had a history of food poisoning , there's so much difference in food poisoning and noro that no comment is necessary.
You say lots were sick and many quarantined--do you have the numbers as to how many? Dozens, hundreds, thousands, --just curious.
We all want to place the blame for everything that happens on someone or something.
As long as there are people in the world, there will be sickness, illnesses, diseases, etc. that are spread to each other. If we happen to get sick on a ship--it's the ships fault. On a plane, it's the planes fault. On a train, has to be the trains fault. We , as individuals are never to blame for anything,
except wanting to blame someone for something.
Don't scratch, pick. wipe, etc. without thoroughly washing. Healthy sailing to all. :wink: :wink:

thecruisequeen April 5th, 2009 06:00 PM

Cruiser00 sorry to hear the horrible Norovirus was on your cruise! :x
How did you hold up? Were you also sick?

thecruisequeen April 5th, 2009 06:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ron
Don't scratch, pick. wipe, etc. without thoroughly washing. Healthy sailing to all. :wink: :wink:

Scratch, Pick & Wipe :?: :?:

rofl rofl

Trip April 5th, 2009 07:49 PM

This happens anywhere. Babson College in the town where I work, was closeed for 5 days last week,..no one was allowed to enter the grounds....

Trust me, we ALL, have sailed ships where there has been an outbreak, because, ALL ships have had them...and we cruise on....

Manuel April 5th, 2009 08:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Trip
This happens anywhere. Babson College in the town where I work, was closeed for 5 days last week,..no one was allowed to enter the grounds....

Trust me, we ALL, have sailed ships where there has been an outbreak, because, ALL ships have had them...and we cruise on....

The virus is brought on the ships by sick passengers. It's very common but life must go on.

TM

ToddDH April 6th, 2009 12:28 AM

Cruiser 00,

In case you believe everyone is biased in favor of cruising regardless of the Norovirus, you'd probably be correct. But that doesn't mean they're wrong.

Previous posters have pointed out several things including Norovirus is the second most prevalent virus in the United States after the common cold and that Norovirus is studied by the CDC by using cruiseships simply because their contained environment make them perfect for the study of such a disease.

What however are your chances of getting sick? The answer is slim to the extreme.

Less than 2700 passengers aboard cruiseships last year were reported to have come down with gastrointestinal illness including Norovirus and many of these were in cruises in Europe. Yet over THIRTEEN MILLION passengers disembarked at American ports last year. In short, you had one chance in 48,149 last year of getting sick from a gastrointestinal illness on a cruise ending at a US Port.

Quite obviously you are an inexperienced cruiser as most cruisers are aware of how small the problem actually is. Therefore, should I be you, I certainly wouldn't let it bother me regardless of the ship I wished to sail.

Todd

nanner10 April 6th, 2009 08:47 PM

I have traveled on multiple ships that have had a current outbreak and a previous outbreak. In fact, we were on the Freedom the first sailing following the apparently now infamous outbreak in 2006. The sailing two weeks before us had a large outbreak and the week before us still had a smaller outbreak despite the efforts of the crew to clean the ship.

When we arrived (early) at the security check-in at the port there was a slightly longer than normal delay to start allowing people to board. Finally a RCCL staff person (oh, I pitied that woman!!) came out and informed everyone that RCCL had voluntarily postponed our sailing while they did a thorough cleaning of the ship.

We were not allowed to sail until Tuesday (instead of Sunday) while they did a complete cleaning of the ship, not once, but twice. If there was anyone who got sick on our sailing I did not hear about it and you can be sure everyone was keeping an ear out, so I am sure the rumors would have been flying!

BTW, Royal Caribbean took very, very [/u]good care of us before during and after the sailing.

I have had the norovirus twice and believe me it is not fun. Neither time was on board a ship or close enough from returning from a cruise to have contracted it on board.

I would not hesitate to sail on any ship for this reason and I am always conscious of safe practices for cleanliness. Could it happen? Yes, but it could (and has!!) happen anywhere. [/u]

cruiser00 April 6th, 2009 10:53 PM

It is really interesting to me to hear from "experienced" cruisers how almost all have come to accept the norovirus as a normal occurrence (expectation) on cruise ships. While I may not be experienced in cruising, I think any hospitality organization that has come to accept 3% sickness of their clients as a pain threshold must care a lot more about their bottom line than the comfort of their customers.

Although I personally avoided the sickness, what I found incredulous was RCI's attitude to the whole ordeal. If this is such a normal occurrence, then RCI was not well prepared to handle it.

Their idea of quarantine: let's take a person with no symptoms and isolate them in a cabin with someone that is throwing up violently and having their intestinal plumbing system completely evacuated.

Their idea of communication: not letting anyone know how many people on board are sick, but making announcements letting people know of a GU illness (they were very careful to avoid using the words "virus" or "outbreak")

Their idea of containment: shoving Purel and Handi-wipes in your face at every turn, but never communicating what it is that they were really trying to contain and how it is actually spread

Their idea of building customer loyalty: offering a customer that they have quarantined for 48 hours a very partial discount on their next cruise with them -- thanks, but no thanks!

The good thing is that to my knowledge, the NoroVirus has never killed anybody -- although I am sure there have been a lot of sick people on RCI ships that wish they could just die and be put out of their sick misery.

Everyone should learn to expect more from a luxury cruise line and not drink the kool-aid they are being fed!

Ron April 7th, 2009 12:35 AM

Maybe I'm missing something, as I'm kinda on the dense side to begin with---but exactly what would you have had RCCL to have done to contain the " illness " and try to keep other people from getting it? If I read your posts correctly they cleaned the ship, they handed out hand cleanser (they were aware that a lot of people would not wash their hands ) to try to assure people had clean hands, thereby limiting the spread of the virus as much as possible, they put people who had the illness and their cabin mates
in quarantine, not to punish anyone but again, to try to limit the outbreak and keep it at a minimum. Sounds like they did a hell of a job as if I understand it correctly, there were approx. 100 people who reportedly were sick.
I'm sure the public and the cruise lines would like to hear how you could have handled it better, so they will better deal with it in the future.

I would like to hear how you would propose to keep people from bringing illnesses aboard--what do the cruise lines need to do--have everyone given a physical prior to boarding ? Bring a note from their doctor that they have been given a clean bill of health within the last 3 days prior to sailing ?
I don't want to keep beating a dead horse but it seems that's it's hard for some people to understand that a ship, no matter how large, is still a small confined space on the ocean with several thousand people aboard, that they stop at ports, people go ashore and bring back who knows what in the way of germs, etc. from some of those ports and then if 100 out of 3-4000 get sick, it's a calamity, all the fault of the cruise line.
In my first post on this I mentioned Walmart and Krogers and how this same " illness " is spread in stores, etc. and is much more prevalent in schools, nursing homes, etc. than on ships. Here's a true story that I witnessed at a large store today that made me think of this post re / the Freedom:
I was starting up an isle and the way was blocked by a young, extremely pretty, well built female who was stopped to talk to someone . She had on a pair of black skin tight stretch pants and I do mean tight. I was standing approx. 3-4 feet behind her, waiting to get around her with my cart. She calmly reached back, ran her hand down the back of her pants and proceeded to scratch something for approx 6-8 seconds. Now I am slightly familiar with female anatomy to a certain extent and from where she had her hand scratching, it could have been one of two places, or possibly both. She finished her scratch, and placed her had back on her cart handle and continued on. I'm sure some unsuspecting soul later on had that same cart . Maybe they'll get sick, maybe not but the point is, it's a lack of hygiene that prompts this type of so-called illness. It happens ashore, afloat and everywhere there's people.

I'm sailing the Freedom this coming fall and may get sick--may be killed in a wreck getting to the dock, may be hit by lightning, or my wife may catch me and my 3 girl friends and do me in--who knows--but I'll not let the extremely slim chance of getting the stomach flu, 24 hour bug, ( aka noro ) keep me away. Remember to wash after you pick, wipe and scratch.
:) :) :) Happy and Healthy sailing to all. :) :)

MamaGalloway April 7th, 2009 12:44 AM

I'm sorry but I feel compelled to dispel the many untruths you have posted.

Norovirus is the actually thought to be the most common group of illnesses, even believed to be one of the millions of causes of the "common cold"



Quote:

Originally Posted by cruiser00
It is really interesting to me to hear from "experienced" cruisers how almost all have come to accept the norovirus as a normal occurrence (expectation) on cruise ships. While I may not be experienced in cruising, I think any hospitality organization that has come to accept 3% sickness of their clients as a pain threshold must care a lot more about their bottom line than the comfort of their customers.


Did you READ the CDC website?? Norovirus is a COMMUNITY ACQUIRED VIRUS....meaning you get it from other infected people!!! Per the CDC website. "People infected with norovirus are contagious from the moment they begin feeling ill to at least 3 days after recovery. Some people may be contagious for as long as 2 weeks after recovery. Therefore, it is particularly important for people to use good handwashing and other hygienic practices after they have recently recovered from norovirus illness."


This means people come aboard harboring the virus and it spreads like wildfire! Also, the only thing that kills norovirus is BLEACH. That means all the sanitizer, lysol, etc in the world will not kill the virus. Handwashing prevents the spread because handwashing cleans by mechanical action. Simply put, soap makes your hands too slick for germs to stick, so the act of lathering up and rinsing makes the germs slide off your hands. If the germs aren't on your hands, you can't eat them to make yourself sick.




"Their idea of quarantine: let's take a person with no symptoms and isolate them in a cabin with someone that is throwing up violently and having their intestinal plumbing system completely evacuated."


Again, per the CDC
How do people become infected with noroviruses?
Noroviruses are found in the stool or vomit of infected people. People can become infected with the virus in several ways, including:

eating food or drinking liquids that are contaminated with norovirus;
touching surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus, and then placing their hand in their mouth;
having direct contact with another person who is infected and showing symptoms (for example, when caring for someone with illness, or sharing foods or eating utensils with someone who is ill).


I am a healthcare worker and I will tell you this. You don't have to share ANYTHING with an infected person to be exposed. Just being around an infected person is enough. This illness is extremely easy to spread. The number of infectious organisms you must be exposed to before becoming ill is VERY LOW compared to other illnesses. Most illnesses require millions of infectious organisms to make you sick, this one requires only a handful.
Therefore, if your child was sick, and you have been breathing anywhere near your child, you have been exposed. To limit exposure to others, you must also be quarantined. Sucks for you, but in the end it's better for all of your shipmates. You would appreciate this if you were on the other end of the stick.


"Their idea of communication: not letting anyone know how many people on board are sick, but making announcements letting people know of a GU illness (they were very careful to avoid using the words "virus" or "outbreak")"

This is because they try to make announcements easily understood by all passengers. That means they dumb it down to third grade level. The CDC specificially writes their explainations of diseases to be on a third grade level. Does that make them guilty of "lack of communication"? And what difference does it make how many are sick? It only takes ONE person to be ill to spread the virus!




"Their idea of containment: shoving Purel and Handi-wipes in your face at every turn, but never communicating what it is that they were really trying to contain and how it is actually spread"

This is a common practice on all cruises, as well as many land based restaurants, and hospitals. If people washed their hands after using the toilet, picking their nose/butt/shoelaces/etc then the disease rates for all illnesses would be MUCH lower. This is good hygiene, period. Not specifically related to Norovirus. You and all of your shipmates should be glad they offered this. It is for YOUR protection!


"The good thing is that to my knowledge, the NoroVirus has never killed anybody -- although I am sure there have been a lot of sick people on RCI ships that wish they could just die and be put out of their sick misery.

Everyone should learn to expect more from a luxury cruise line and not drink the kool-aid they are being fed![/quote]


Not true, people DO die from Norovirus, just like they die from the flu or chicken pox. Children and the elderly are especially vulnerable, as well as anyone who is immunocompromised, as is true of any illness. It normally does not kill healthy people. Again, Norovirus is a COMMUNITY ACQUIRED ILLNESS.....NOT RELATED TO A CRUISESHIP!!!


RCL is not a luxury line. It was not their fault anyone had Norovirus. It wasn't put in the Kool Aid.....political or otherwise.

However, as I have had norovirus before, I am sure your suffering was very real, and I sure hate to hear that your vacation was ruined. I, too, felt that I would like to have been put out of my misery when I had noro. However, I KNOW I was infected doing patient care on someone who did not tell anyone he was ill, and in turn infected over 100 employees at my institution of employment several years ago.

I will end by saying it is never wrong to practice good hygiene.

HANDWASHING is the SINGLE MOST EFFECTIVE WAY TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF INFECTION!!

ToddDH April 7th, 2009 02:34 AM

Cruiser 00,

It is obvious that you are upset with your cruising experience, especially because it appears to have been one of if not your first. I am truly sorrythat was at least a "sort of" introduction to the industry.

Believe me when I tell you that those who have countered your arguments are correct. As a matter of fact, when it comes to the illness itself, your physician could have told you everything mentioned above.

If again you cruise, you undoubtedly will cruise another line and human nature being what it is, will undoubtedly excoriate RCL to your fellow passengers on that vessel.

But what will you do if and when Norovirus reocurrs on your new cruiseline of choice? I assure you, it will be handled the same way. Hopefully, however, that will never occur.

Obviously, any form of travel has its health hazards. In my earlier post I think I validated that the chances of it actually occurring to a particular passenger are extremely slim. It looks as if you simply had the bad luck to draw a "3" as opposed to an "ace."

Oh, and as for your remark of the Cruise Lines that they "accept 3% sickness of their clients as a pain threshold must care a lot more about their bottom line than the comfort of their customers," here yet again is a classic example of an individual reading what they want to read rather than what is actually written. The 3% is not an "acceptance factor." It is, purely and simply, a Federal reporting regulation.

Yes, we're biased but I am always open to criticism of the industry having levied some myself. But I do urge that you take the time as regards a problem to educate yourself as to all facets of the problem prior to casting aspersions. To do so will most certainly provide something you so severely lack in this instance and that simply put, is your credibility. Familiarity with any problem will also stand you in good stead regardless of whatever complaint you may levy in the future.

Todd

cruiser00 April 7th, 2009 08:54 AM

Here are a couple of proposals:

- Communicate openly and honestly with customers.
- If someone goes to their medical facility, give them an information sheet from the CDC on NoroVirus
- Don't sugar coat communications with the term "GI illness" -- call it what it is which is NoroVirus
- Share what the level of outbreak is so people can understand the urgency of the issue (which I guess RCI is scared to share because it will make people realize the reality of the health situation)
- Educate customers that good hand washing is the only real way to deal with this virus. The "shock and awe" methods of Purel and Handi-Wipes are admirable, but are they really that effective.
- Hire enough people to adequately staff their ships. According to the Cruise Director, RCI had engine men working 14 hour days and then coming up to to wipe down the handrails. They had entertainers spooning out eggs in the Windjammer. The lead singer told me he had a sore throat and he was coughing all over the place, but they still had him working in food service -- seems like they are compounding the health issues on the ship, not addressing them!

The idea that RCI is dumbing down their message so everyone can understand is ludicrous -- they just don't want the bad PR so they are going to dress up the pig in the poke.

Some other ideas:
- Hire a couple of roaming pirates who:
- Cut the hands off anyone caught picking their butt
- Walk all sick people off a gang plank
- Put anyone that sneezes in the lower galley with bread and water rations

For those of you who want to dismiss me as a "first time cruiser", your snobbish attitude matches that of RCI. The fact of the matter is that there are plenty of first time cruisers on a cruise ship and the cruise line does very little to educate them on the increased risk of NoroVirus on their ships. While "long-time cruisers" may have drank enough Kool-Aid to come to accept this as an acceptable risk, there are plenty of us that expect to be able to remain healthy when we go on vacation.

People use to worry about bad food or water in port and the raging effect of Montezuma's revenge, but the reality is that there greatest health risk is being on the cruise ship itself!

ToddDH April 7th, 2009 10:21 AM

Cruise 00,

I refer you to the last paragraph of my previous post. If you were to read many of these Boards you'd learn a lot of things, one being that we're anything but snobbish.

Todd

katlady April 7th, 2009 10:55 AM

THe CDC site is interesting. I found the ships that got a perfect score of 100. http://wwwn.cdc.gov/vsp/inspectionqu...h100Score.aspx When Freedom of the Seas was inspected on 8/24/08 it recieved a perfect score. From your post the FOS had the virus on 2006 than on your cruise. I'm willing to risk it on a ship getting the virus every 3 years. This all depends on your sailing. Since I put the the 10 ships with a perfect score. I run a search for a score 85 or less, which the CDC says are not satisfactory. http://wwwn.cdc.gov/vsp/inspectionqu...onResults.aspx :shock:

cutiecat April 7th, 2009 12:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by katlady
THe CDC site is interesting. I found the ships that got a perfect score of 100. http://wwwn.cdc.gov/vsp/inspectionqu...h100Score.aspx When Freedom of the Seas was inspected on 8/24/08 it recieved a perfect score. From your post the FOS had the virus on 2006 than on your cruise. I'm willing to risk it on a ship getting the virus every 3 years. This all depends on your sailing. Since I put the the 10 ships with a perfect score. I run a search for a score 85 or less, which the CDC says are not satisfactory. http://wwwn.cdc.gov/vsp/inspectionqu...onResults.aspx :shock:

thanks katlady. that's interesting to read

FL_Cruiser64 April 7th, 2009 02:05 PM

Now I know why the ship inspection on the Freedom was canceled.

A group of cruise3sixty attendees had the Freedom of the Seas scheduled for ship inspection. It was canceled on short notice and as a "sorry" they all got invited to a 2-day pre-inaugural on the Oasis.

eddie05sl April 7th, 2009 02:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ToddDH
Cruiser 00,

In case you believe everyone is biased in favor of cruising regardless of the Norovirus, you'd probably be correct. But that doesn't mean they're wrong.

Previous posters have pointed out several things including Norovirus is the second most prevalent virus in the United States after the common cold and that Norovirus is studied by the CDC by using cruiseships simply because their contained environment make them perfect for the study of such a disease.

What however are your chances of getting sick? The answer is slim to the extreme.

Less than 2700 passengers aboard cruiseships last year were reported to have come down with gastrointestinal illness including Norovirus and many of these were in cruises in Europe. Yet over THIRTEEN MILLION passengers disembarked at American ports last year. In short, you had one chance in 48,149 last year of getting sick from a gastrointestinal illness on a cruise ending at a US Port.

Quite obviously you are an inexperienced cruiser as most cruisers are aware of how small the problem actually is. Therefore, should I be you, I certainly wouldn't let it bother me regardless of the ship I wished to sail.

Todd

An "experienced" cruiser in our Freedom of the Seas stateroom had gastrointestinal distress and chose to recuperate with the aid of Imodium and without the aid of the medical staff. Surely we are not the only cruisers to go this route--and thus our illness went unreported. That said, I think you can easily cut your 1 in 48,149 chances in half. The nurse, visited by another member of our party, said this was the worst outbreak in her 8 years of working on cruise ships. Hallways were used as additional medical waiting room space and the CDC was waiting when when we disembarked.

You may be an "experienced" cruiser or just lucky. We can safely say in our lifetime we have spent over 100 weeks on various vacations--5 weeks on cruise ships. Freedom of the Seas was the only vacation that allowed us to spend vacation time, money and an inordinate amount of time in a bathroom. We may cruise again but we will never forget that experience--reported or not.

eddie05sl April 7th, 2009 02:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Campion
I'm sorry, but this poll is utterly pointless. Norovirus is one of, if not the, most common virus after the common cold. If you won't travel on a cruise ship because of it, I suggest you also avoid gas stations, restuarants, and interaction with the public in general.

"Utterly pointless until you use a week of vacation and a pile of money to spend an inordinate amount of time in a little bathroom...a medical staff offering complimentary visits but refusing to provide copies of the forms you filled out...spending your non-bathroom time watching gloved and masked crews spraying and wiping anything you might touch...listening to announcements advising you that crew members will no longer shake your hand--nor should you shake anyones hand... I agree, germs are everywhere but on this cruise it was so in-your-face and now I find it is an ongoing issue with this ship."

eddie05sl April 7th, 2009 02:56 PM

What a silly survey question! How about "would you go to a hospital where a person has died?"

Instead, "would you like an easy-to-find accounting of the number of illnesses reported by specific ships and sailing dates?"

YES!


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