For Immediate Release
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Contact: CDC Media Relations
We commend the extraordinary efforts by the Government of Japan to institute quarantine measures onboard the Diamond Princess. While the quarantine potentially conferred a significant public health benefit in slowing transmission, CDC’s assessment is that it may not have been sufficient to prevent transmission among individuals on the ship. CDC believes the rate of new infections on board, especially among those without symptoms, represents an ongoing risk. Therefore, to protect the health of the American public, all passengers and crew of the ship have been placed under travel restrictions, preventing them from returning to the United States for at least 14 days after they had left the Diamond Princess.
Currently, there are more than 100 U.S. citizens still onboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship or in hospitals in Japan. These citizens have been placed under the restrictions, as have the ship’s other passengers and crew.
After disembarkation from the Diamond Princess, these passengers and crew will be required to wait 14 days without having symptoms or a positive coronavirus test result before they are permitted to board flights to the United States.
If an individual from this cruise arrives in the United States before the 14-day period ends, they will still be subject to a mandatory quarantine until they have completed the 14-day period with no symptoms or positive coronavirus test results.
Because of their high-risk exposure, there may be additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 among the remaining passengers on board the Diamond Princess.
CDC is committed to protecting the health and safety of all Americans. We continue to believe that the risk of exposure to COVID-19 to the general public in the United States is currently low. The U.S. Government is taking these measures to protect the Diamond Princess passengers and crew, their loved ones, the traveling public, and communities within the United States.