Last week, the U.S. Coast Guard received a call from the Norwegian Gem, requesting an emergency medevac for a 66 year old passenger who was experiencing complications arising from diabetes. Per reports, the Coast Guard received the call around 11:45 a.m. and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew was dispatched from Elizabeth City. At the time of the medevac, the woman was approximately 220 miles southeast of Portsmouth. The Coast Guard made it to the cruise ship around 2:30 p.m., evacuating the woman and taking her to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. It was last reported that she was in stable condition.
Reports fail to mention how the woman’s complications were discovered in this case, but, nevertheless, a cruise ship’s prompt and adequate diagnosis of a passenger’s medical condition can some times be the difference between life and death. As previously reported by our blog, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals’ recent Franza decision now holds a cruise ship liable for the medical malpractice of its shipboard doctors. Medical malpractice cases aboard cruise ships often involve a shipboard doctor’s failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis of a passenger’s condition, such as a stroke or heart attack. Luckily for this woman, it appears her condition was diagnosed by someone in time. A video of the medevac can be viewed below.