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No necessity for self-Isolation for passengers from Westerdam for COVID-19, says Australian Health Authorities

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Thermal scanner at an airport in Cambodia, the first line of detection and defence against COVID19. Supplied

Passengers from the MS Westerdam cruise vessel need no longer undergo the 14 days’ self-isolation on return to Australia.

In stating this, the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) said they are contacting passengers from the vessel who have returned home to Australia to communicate this new information.

“This advice, which aligns with the United States Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, is made on the basis that significant testing of passengers has not led to any further cases beyond the one initial passenger.

“Cambodian authorities have tested large numbers of Westerdam cruise ship travelers who are still in Cambodia and all have tested negative to date. Based on this, the AHPPC has concluded, like our colleagues in the United States that these passengers presented a low risk of COVID-19 and the proportionate response is to remove the restrictions,” the statement said.

The AHPPC said that it made its original decision on self-isolation out of an abundance of caution to protect the Australian public’s health.

“Like all our decision so far, this was based on the best medical advice at the time and on the basis of a positive case on the ship. Self-isolation in Australia allowed time for further testing and a better understanding of the situation for passengers from the Westerdam.

Meanwhile in Malaysia, the sole passenger who had tested positive, has now been declared that multiple follow up tests after treatment since Saturday, has turned up negative and that the patient, Stermer Sarah J Ramer will be discharges as soon as the symptoms disappear.


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