Critically Ill Passenger On Cruise Ship Off San Francisco Evacuated For Medical Care

A “critically ill” passenger from a cruise ship stranded off San Francisco Bay due to coronavirus fears was evacuated from the Grand Princess for medical care.

It wasn’t immediately known if the passenger was suffering from coronavirus symptoms.

“At 7:15 this morning, we successfully evacuated the critically-ill guest,” the captain said Saturday in a video taken by a guest and provided to ABC affiliate  KGO TV in San Francisco.

The night before, the captain announced in a recording taken by the same guest and provided to KCRA-3 TV in Sacramento: “We have a guest who requires medical assistance at the moment. The Coast Guard has been called and the possible airlift of that guest may be possible.”

The captain later announced that a Coast Guard cutter evacuated the passenger. The Coast Guard also dropped off supplies for the ship.

The captain announced Friday night that the Grand Princess was some 20 miles off the coast of California. The ship has been circling international waters aimlessly, awaiting permission to dock so the passengers can disembark.

But California officials fear the spread of coronavirus from the ship. Twenty-one people aboard, including 19 crew members, have already tested positive for the  virus. There are more than 3,500 passengers and crew members on board. Only 46 had been tested as of Friday.

There were 10 cases of coronavirus, including a death, linked to the ship’s last voyage, The Associated Press reported.

Vice President Mike Pence said Friday that passengers would be taken to an unidentified “non commercial” dock. Everyone on board will be tested there, Pence said. American passengers flown to the U.S. from a cruise ship stranded off Japan last month were flown to military bases.

But President Donald Trump expressed reluctance Friday to allow passengers off the Grand Princess because they would boost the “numbers” of coronavirus cases on U.S. soil.

“I would rather have the people stay … I like the numbers being where they are,” Trump said during a visit to the headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “I don’t need to have the numbers double because of one ship that wasn’t our fault.”

But he said he would defer to the “experts,” which he said included Pence.  

Cruise ships carrying people sick with coronavirus are proving to be dangerous breeding grounds for the disease that can threaten the health of everyone on board. 

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