Infectious Disease Outbreaks on a Cruise Ship, April 2011

Cheng-Haw Wang1, Wan-Chin Chen1, Chun-Ling Lai1, Ham-Ming Ong1,Tzu-June Chen1, Hwan-Feng Wang1, Tsui-Feng Lee2, Huai-Te Tsai3

2011 Vol.27 NO.16

Correspondence Author: Cheng-Haw Wang

  • 1. First Branch, Centers for Disease Control, Taiwan
  • 2. Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health Division, Bureau of Health Promotion, Taiwan
  • 3. Sixth Branch, Centers for Diseases Control, Taiwan


A cruise ship that docks at Keelung Port regularly began reporting of infectious disease cases in late April 2011. By mid-May, there were a total of 5 varicella, 2 rubella, and 1 mumps cases reported. All ill crew members were recruited from Southeast Asia and joined the cruise during late March to early April. Through treatment, isolation, strengthened disinfection, health monitoring of crew and passengers, and health education, no additional cases were reported by June 17.
During June and August 2010, Hong Kong and Taiwan both reported varicella outbreaks on cruise ships. Because of the current outbreaks of varicella, rubella, and mumps, the cruise company is once again reminded to conduct new crew recruits proper health screening and vaccination, and provide as reference for Health quarantine authorities, to ensure the health of crew and passengers on board.