Coronavirus patient from Artania cruise ship dies in Perth hospital, taking national COVID-19 toll to 28


April 03, 2020 16:44:54

A foreign passenger from the Artania cruise ship who was infected with coronavirus has died in a West Australian hospital.

Key points:

  • The ship docked a week ago after two life-threatening emergencies on board
  • The WA Premier has called for the Commonwealth to resolve the problem
  • Most passengers have flown home, but ship is refusing to leave Fremantle

WA health authorities have confirmed a man aged in his 60s died at Joondalup Health Campus.

More than 40 passengers and crew who contracted the virus were taken off the MV Artania for treatment at Perth hospitals over the past week, after the vessel docked at Fremantle Port last Friday.

It brings the number of COVID-19 deaths in WA to three and takes the national coronavirus death toll to 28.

WA Premier Mark McGowan yesterday urged the Artania to leave Australian waters, fearing if its 464 crew on board become sick they could overwhelm WA’s health system.

Most passengers were flown to Germany on charter flights organised by Phoenix Reisen, the German-registered cruise company which operates the ship, on March 29.

Around a dozen passengers deemed unfit to fly were later transferred to a hotel in Perth’s CBD.

Crew refuse request to leave port

The crew has told the Australian Border Force (ABF), which issued the ship a directive to leave Australian waters, that they wanted to remain in port for another two weeks.

None of the passengers or crew from the vessel are Australian.

The ABF confirmed 12 crew members, none of them critical to the vessel’s operation, were tested for COVID-19 yesterday and had been isolated on board to await their results.

ABF Commissioner Michael Outram said the MV Artania’s crew members could be safely quarantined on board given the size of the ship.

A spokesperson from the Department of Home Affairs did not provide an update on the outcome of those tests when asked on Friday.












First posted

April 03, 2020 15:38:29

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