Hundreds fall ill on Galveston-based cruise ship, prompting CDC investigation

The CDC hasn’t named the sickness but is investigating the cause


GALVESTON, Texas – A gastrointestinal illness spread to over 300 people on a cruise ship out of Galveston, and now the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is investigating the cause.

The cruise ship, Ruby Princess, set sail on Feb. 26 through March 5, according to the CDC. It’s unknown when the first case was reported.

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Of the 2,881 passengers on board, 284 came down with the illness. The two main symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea, according to the CDC.

There were 34 crew members out of 1,159 that also fell ill.

At last check, the CDC is still working to figure out a potential cause for the sickness. It also hasn’t been named as of yet.

Since the reported outbreak though, the Princess Cruises line is working to help mitigate the spread with these processes, per the CDC:

  • Increased cleaning and disinfection procedures according to the ship’s outbreak prevention and response plan.
  • Collected stool specimens from gastrointestinal illness cases to send to the CDC lab for pathogenic identification.
  • Distributed notifications and made ship announcements to embarking guests, informing them of increased number of illness cases onboard the previous voyage.

The sickness cases reported are from the entire voyage and not at a certain disembark location.

To learn more about the investigation, follow this link.

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