Expert forum on communicable disease outbreaks on cruise ships

Meeting report

Outbreaks of communicable diseases on cruise ships have been detected with increasing prevalence among ships sailing in European waters and have been associated mostly with respiratory, enteric and vaccine preventable pathogens. In response to the growing need for coordinated measures to assess public health issues related to passenger ships, ECDC is supporting the European Commission as a collaborating member and part of the Advisory Committee of the SHIPSAN Training Network (SHIPSAN TRAINET) project. This collaboration aims to strengthen capacity for the prevention and control of infectious disease outbreaks on passenger ships. The need for clear procedures for outbreak detection, reporting, investigation and control was demonstrated and for this reason a meeting was organised by ECDC, with the participation of European and international experts, to identify the main elements required for outbreak detection and control on cruise ships in European waters.