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Mexico to Allow Entry to Cruise Ships With COVID-19 Patients

By Alfonso Núñez | Tue, 12/28/2021 - 12:20

Mexico will open its ports to cruise ships that request entry and provide medical attention to their reported COVID-19 cases, the ministries of health and tourism announced following an International Sanitary Ruling by the World Health Organization (WHO).

 

The news comes a day after authorities from the state of Jalisco prevented a cruise from docking in Puerto Vallarta due to a spread of COVID-19 on board with 69 crew members testing positive to the virus. The cruise ship had taken off on Dec. 24 from Long Beach, California in the US and had detected five cases of COVID-19 amongst the crew before embarking.

 

This was the second instance of a cruise being turned away from entering the country in the last four days as a cruise ship with 21 detected cases of COVID-19 had been identified before. During the next two days, three more cruise ships are expected to dock in Puerto Vallarta. Today, the health and tourism ministries announced that cruise ships will be allowed to dock across the country’s coasts and confirmed their cooperation to the International Sanitary Ruling by WHO.

 

“Following the protocols for biosecurity established by the national and international bodies, the Mexican government will receive at its maritime ports cruise ships that request to dock in our country,” the Mexican government clarified in a public statement.

 

The statement also added that in the case of passengers testing positive for COVID-19 or experiencing symptoms of the virus, medical attention would be provided and even those testing positive but not showing symptoms would be kept in preventive quarantine. Those facing more serious symptoms will be offered medical attention in the cities where the ship docks. Those who do not show any symptoms and do not test positive will be allowed to continue with their tourism activities while still following the country’s health protocols.

 

The statement also referred to the cruise ship previously denied entry into the country and clarified that it will be allowed to dock in Guaymas, Sonora where it will receive support from the local and federal government. Tourism is one of the country’s largest economic activities, making up 8.5 percent of the GDP. There is a risk, however, that the current low Omicron confirmed numbers in the country could rise through tourism from other countries facing high contagion spikes, like the US.

Photo by:   Unsplash, Josiah Weiss
Alfonso Núñez Alfonso Núñez Journalist & Industry Analyst