U.S. CDC warns against cruise travel as Omicron drives up COVID-19 cases

2021-12-31 11:23:01Xinhua Editor : Zhang Mingxin ECNS App Download
Special: Battle Against Novel Coronavirus

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Thursday called on people to avoid cruise travel, regardless of vaccination status, as more COVID-19 cases, driven by the Omicron variant, have been identified on cruise vessels.

"The COVID-19 Travel Health Notice level has been updated from Level 3 to Level 4, the highest level. This reflects increases in cases onboard cruise ships since identification of the Omicron variant," said the CDC.

Even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants, said the CDC.

"The virus that causes COVID-19 spreads easily between people in close quarters on board ships, and the chance of getting COVID-19 on cruise ships is very high, even if you are fully vaccinated and have received a COVID-19 vaccine booster dose," said the agency.

It is especially important that travelers who are at an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19 avoid travel on cruise ships, including river cruises, worldwide, regardless of vaccination status, said the CDC.

A total of 88 vessels are under CDC's investigation or observation for COVID-19 outbreaks. Four other vessels are also being monitored by the CDC, according to data released on the CDC website Wednesday.




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