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Meningitis outbreak on cruise ship

12 October 2012 09:26

An outbreak of bacterial meningitis has been reported on board the MSC Orchestra

An outbreak of bacterial meningitis has been reported on board the MSC Orchestra

Four crew members have been treated in hospital after an outbreak of bacterial meningitis on board the MSC Orchestra.

MSC Cruises has revealed that two of the crew are in a serious condition in Livorno's main hospital in Italy and all passengers on the 3,000-capacity cruise liner have been given an antibiotic treatment as a precaution. Meanwhile, other passengers that have been on the ship in the past week have been advised to take the treatment as well, as an "extra precaution".

No details have been released regarding the source of the outbreak but the vessel has been deemed compliant with international maritime health and safety regulations after an inspection by Spanish health authorities in Valencia.MSC head of corporate medical services Pierfrancesco Lepore insists the matter is now under control, but the incident does confirm the importance of specific medical travel insurance. "The situation on board MSC Orchestra is under control and an MSC Cruises medical taskforce is currently on board to closely monitor the situation and ensure that all necessary procedures are followed," he said.