Millions of cruise passengers visit the Bahamas each year on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, NCL, Carnival, Disney, Holland America and Princess' ships. Though becoming sick or injured is the last thing on travelers' minds, it does occur with some regularity. This law firm has represented and currently represents many people who were hurt on cruises to the Bahamas. The average traveler is also unaware medical care is limited in the Bahamas and many hospitals are not equipped to handle surgeries. This means if there is a serious emergency the passenger would have to be medically evacuated to the United States by airplane. To complicate the problem, it is the practice of Bahamian hospitals and air ambulances to require upfront payment or a letter from an insurance company guaranteeing payment before they will provide treatment. Depending upon the type of injury, medical bills could reach over $100,000. Many of these injured passengers are unaware their insurance plans do not cover overseas accidents. As a consequence, they are responsible for their medical bills. This has become such a common issue that the United States Embassy in the Bahamas recommends cruise passengers inquire if their insurance covers emergency care outside the United States, and if it does not, the State Department recommends purchasing travel insurance before leaving the country.
Recently in Cruise Ship Norovirus Category
The Royal Caribbean VOYAGER OF THE SEAS sailed into New Orleans while the Princess cruise ships CROWN PRINCESS and RUBY PRINCESS sailed into Ft. Lauderdale this weekend with Norovirus outbreaks. The P&O cruise ship AURORA also reported a Norovirus outbreak earlier this year. Norovirus is a significant problem aboard cruise ships. It is rapidly passed from one person to another through direct contact and indirect contact by touching elevator buttons, door handles, pens, toilets and other common items. The disease can also spread by infected cabin attendants and galley stewards who touch your possessions while making up the cabin and eating utensils when stocking them on the tables.
Royal Caribbean and Princess stated they will perform "enhanced cleanings" of the ships, but, will keep the ships sailing. Such cleaning techniques often times do not eradicate the virus. It is interesting to know how Royal Caribbean and Princess will notify the oncoming passengers of the outbreak in the coming weeks or if the cruise lines will allow passengers who do not want to cruise at this time to re-book their reservations without penalty. If you sailed on the VOYAGER OF THE SEAS, CROWN PRINCESS, or RUBY PRINCESS within the month of February and would like to share your experience, please leave a comment below.