14 passengers evacuated from Diamond Princess cruise ship test positive for Coronavirus

Posted at 3:30 PM, Feb 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-17 22:10:57-05

Fourteen American passengers who left the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan Sunday tested positive for the new coronavirus, according to the U.S. State Department.

The evacuated passengers had been tested 2-3 days earlier.

The U.S. State Department said "these individuals were moved in the most expeditious and safe manner to a specialized containment area on the evacuation aircraft to isolate them in accordance with standard protocols. The State Department made the decision to allow the 14 individuals, who were in isolation, separated from other passengers, and continued to be asymptomatic, to remain on the aircraft to complete the evacuation process."

"A select number of high risk patients were transported onward from both locations using those same aircraft to Omaha, Nebraska, for care at the University of Nebraska," Health and Human Services official Robert Kadlec said at the news briefing.

These included six passengers from the Travis Air Force Base in California, which landed just before midnight on Sunday, and seven from the Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, which arrived early Monday, said Dr. William Walters, director of operational medicine at the State Department.