Remaining passengers will be transferred to federal military installations for medical screening, COVID-19 testing, and a 14-day quarantine, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced in a statement Sunday.
Nearly 1,000 passengers who are California residents will complete the mandatory quarantine at Travis Air Force Base and Miramar Naval Air Station. Residents of other states will complete the mandatory quarantine at Joint Base San Antonio Lackland in Texas or Dobbins Air Force Base in Georgia, according to the federal department.
The U.S. Department of State is working closely with the home countries of several hundred passengers to arrange for repatriation, according to the statement.
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Both Alan and Amy work as nurses. Amy is a nurse at Soin Medical Center and also serves as a reservist, and Alan is in the Guard and also works at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base as an analyst, Alan said.
Neither have symptoms, but since Thursday afternoon they have been quarantined to their cabins, Alan said.
“I guess if the ship captain is trying to be polite, they are not saying quarantine, or captive,” Alan said. “(But) we are told three times daily we cannot leave our rooms: ‘The CDC will not allow it.’”
He said one passenger in need of advanced medical care was picked up by a smaller boat on Sunday and taken to shore.
Even if the ship docks Monday, it could be some time before all passengers are shuttled to the federal facilities, Alan said.
“Sounds like we will stay aboard the ship for a few days and then transferred,” he said.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine held a weekend press conference with Ohio Department of Health director, Dr. Amy Acton to announce the state’s protocol for maximizing coronavirus testing resources now that in-state testing is available.
DeWine confirmed the department was awaiting the results of five people who were tested for the virus, however there were still no confirmed cases in Ohio as of Saturday.
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“As the COVID-19 situation evolves, the Ohio Department of Health, working in conjunction with hospitals, primary care providers, and other health care experts, has a plan to maximize our testing resources,” DeWine said. “We are prioritizing the patients who are the most vulnerable to be tested in the Department of Health’s State Laboratory, while ensuring those that need COVID-19 testing will be able to be tested.”
The department will start releasing data every day, Acton said. All test results will be reported to the department.