A passenger on a cruise liner docked in Sydney has been cleared of coronavirus after the ship’s owner slammed false and inflammatory media reports which suggested someone on board could have contracted the disease.
NSW Health on Friday afternoon said one person from the Norwegian Jewel – who was tested purely as a precautionary measure – had been cleared of COVID-19.
The ship, which arrived in Sydney on Friday and is scheduled to depart on Saturday for a 14-day cruise of Australia and New Zealand, was never locked down.
The company initially said all inbound passengers were healthy but later revised its statement to make clear some passengers had come down with a stomach illness while sailing from Auckland to Sydney.
However, no passengers had any respiratory-related illnesses.
“There are various false inflammatory media reports regarding the ship,” Norwegian Cruise Line said on Friday morning.
“There is absolutely no truth to those stories.”
NSW Health said no passengers arriving into Sydney on the Norwegian Jewel had visited mainland China in the past 14 days “and there was no outbreak of any disease on board”.
Three routine medical transfers from the ship occurred on Friday unrelated to respiratory illness.
One passenger was tested for a range of respiratory illnesses including influenza and coronavirus.
“The test results were negative to COVID-19,” the health department said.
Norwegian Cruise Line has barred all Chinese, Hong Kong and Macau passport holders from its ships regardless of residency.