Cruise Ship with 100 COVID Passengers Docks in Sydney

Brisbane from oceanside
Updated Published

The Coral Princess cruise ship has anchored at Sydney's Circular Quay with more than 100 COVID-positive crew members and passengers on board.

Before stepping off a cruise ship that has moored in Sydney and has more than 100 COVID-19 positive passengers, passengers will need to provide a negative quick antigen test result; however, the crew must stay on board.

The Coral Princess, which had more than 2,300 people on board, arrived in Circular Quay just before sunrise on Wednesday after sailing from Eden on the NSW South Coast. There, it will stay for a day before sailing back to its Brisbane home port.

Most of the ship's affected crew members are part of the outbreak, and as of Tuesday, 114 were isolated. According to Queensland's chief health officer John Gerrard, four people were also quarantined after positive readings, and 24 had already disembarked in Brisbane.

According to NSW Health, those who tested positive for the virus most likely brought it on board with them rather than getting sick at sea. On Tuesday, the ship anchored at Eden, where about 800 people disembarked following test results that were negative.

In the meantime, Annastacia Palaszczuk, the premier of Queensland, has requested that Anthony Albanese, the prime minister, convene a national cabinet meeting so that the chief health officer can advise the chief ministers and premiers about the worsening COVID-19 situation.

Since the beginning of June, COVID-19 cases have been progressively increasing as the immunity-evading BA.4 and BA.5 viral variants have proliferated.

According to estimates from the health department, there were more than 300,000 active cases throughout Australia as of last week.

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia has criticized the government for not extending the concession card holders' access to free quick antigen tests. "Case numbers and hospitalisations are still rising every single day," said society president Fei Sim. "Governments should be encouraging more testing, not less.”