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Author: COVID-19 NEWS

Links with this icon indicate that you are leaving the CDC website.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cannot attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website.
Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website.
You will be subject to the destination website’s privacy policy when you follow the link.
CDC is not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private website.

For more information on CDC’s web notification policies, see Website Disclaimers.

The reporting requirements differ for laboratories and research clinicians:
Laboratories
Laboratories are not responsible for reporting these data since they do not have the patient-identifying information required to comply with reporting requirements. However, state health department rules and regulations apply and may differ from this general guidance.
Research Clinicians
In clinical trials, research clinicians who are responsible for clinical care of trial participants are responsible for linking de-identified specimen test results to participant demographic information and are required to report the positive results daily to the appropriate state or local public health department based on the patient’s residence. Demographic information required for reporting is detailed in HHS’s June 4, 2020 guidanceexternal icon.
Research clinicians are not required to report negative test results. However, state health department rules and regulations apply and may differ from this general guidance.
If a clinician receives COVID-19 test results from duplicate specimens that were collected in the same manner and tested with different test methods (e.g., different platforms) or in different CLIA laboratories, the clinician should not report both results. In the case of two positive test results, the clinician should report the result that is provided first. In the case of discrepant test results, the clinician should report the positive result. However, state health department rules and regulations apply and may differ from this general guidance.
If the clinician requests COVID-19 testing for study participants independent of research activities or for clinical management, results should be reported to the appropriate state or local public health department.

Stay home if you are having symptoms of COVID-19.
Follow CDC recommended steps if you are sick.
Do not return to work until you meet the criteria to discontinue home isolation.
Talk with your healthcare provider about when it’s safe for you to return to work and coordinate with your employer.

Stay at least 6 feet away from passengers and coworkers, when possible.
Wear a cloth face covering or mask in public, and at work when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. Face coverings or masks may prevent people who don’t know they have the virus from spreading it to others.
Be careful when putting on and taking off cloth face coverings or masks:
Wash your hands before putting on and after taking off the cloth face covering or mask.
Don’t touch your face covering or mask while wearing it.
Don’t touch your face, mouth, nose, or eyes while taking off the covering or mask.
Wash the cloth face covering or mask after each use.

Consider carrying a spare cloth face covering or mask. If the cloth face covering or mask becomes wet, visibly soiled, or contaminated at work, it should be removed and stored to be laundered later.
Cloth face coverings or masks should not be worn if their use creates a new risk (for example, if they interfere with driving or vision, or contribute to heat-related illness) that exceeds their COVID-19 related benefits of slowing the spread of the virus. Cloth face coverings or masks should also not be worn by anyone who has trouble breathing or is unable to remove the covering or mask without assistance. CDC provides information on adaptations and alternatives that should be considered when cloth face coverings or masks may not be feasible.
If you are concerned about the use of cloth face coverings or masks at your workplace, discuss them with your employer.
Be aware of contact with frequently touched surfaces.
Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. You don’t need to wear gloves if you wash your hands regularly (unless they are already required for your job).
Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol if soap and water aren’t available.
Wash your hands at these key times:
Before, during, and after preparing food
Before eating food
After using the toilet
After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
After putting on, touching, or removing cloth face coverings or masks
Before and after work and work breaks
After touching frequently touched surfaces, such as fareboxes and handrails

 Do not touch your face, mouth, nose, or eyes.
Cover your coughs and sneezes.
Use tissues to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.
Throw used tissues in the trash.
Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

CDC recommends that people wear masks in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
Masks may help prevent people who have COVID-19 from spreading the virus to others.
Masks are most likely to reduce the spread of COVID-19 when they are widely used by people in public settings.
Masks should NOT be worn by children under the age of 2 or anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Masks with exhalation valves or vents should NOT be worn to help prevent the person wearing the mask from spreading COVID-19 to others (source control).

Evidence for Effectiveness of Masks

Masks are recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people when the person wearing the mask coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice. This is called source control. This recommendation is based on what we know about the role respiratory droplets play in the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19, paired with emerging evidence from clinical and laboratory studies that shows masks reduce the spray of droplets when worn over the nose and mouth. COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet), so the use of masks is particularly important in settings where people are close to each other or where social distancing is difficult to maintain. CDC’s recommendations for masks will be updated as new scientific evidence becomes available.
Who Should Wear A Mask?
 General public

CDC recommends all people 2 years of age and older wear a mask in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
COVID-19 can be spread by people who do not have symptoms and do not know that they are infected. That’s why it’s important for everyone to wear masks in public settings and practice social distancing (staying at least 6 feet away from other people).
While masks are strongly encouraged to reduce the spread of COVID-19, CDC recognizes there are specific instances when wearing a mask may not be feasible. In these instances, adaptations and alternatives should be considered whenever possible (see below for examples).
 People who know or think they might have COVID-19
If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19, do not visit public areas. Stay home except to get medical care. As much as possible stay in a specific room and away from other people and pets in your home. If you need to be around other people or animals, wear a mask (including in your home).
The mask helps prevent a person who is sick from spreading the virus to others. It helps keep respiratory droplets contained and from reaching other people.
Caregivers of people with COVID-19
Who Should Not Wear a Mask
Masks should not be worn by:
Children younger than 2 years old
Anyone who has trouble breathing
Anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance
Feasibility and Adaptations
CDC recognizes that wearing masks may not be possible in every situation or for some people. In some situations, wearing a mask may exacerbate a physical or mental health condition, lead to a medical emergency, or introduce significant safety concerns. Adaptations and alternatives should be considered whenever possible to increase the feasibility of wearing a mask or to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading if it is not possible to wear one.
For example,
People who are deaf or hard of hearing—or those who care for or interact with a person who is hearing impaired—may be unable to wear masks if they rely on lipreading to communicate. In this situation, consider using a clear mask. If a clear mask isn’t available, consider whether you can use written communication, use closed captioning, or decrease background noise to make communication possible while wearing a mask that blocks your lips.
Some people, such as people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental health conditions or other sensory sensitivities, may have challenges wearing a mask. They should consult with their healthcare provider for advice about wearing masks.
Younger children (e.g., preschool or early elementary aged) may be unable to wear a mask properly, particularly for an extended period of time. Wearing of masks may be prioritized at times when it is difficult to maintain a distance of 6 feet from others (e.g., during carpool drop off or pick up, or when standing in line at school). Ensuring proper mask size and fit and providing children with frequent reminders and education on the importance and proper wear of masks may help address these issues.
People should not wear masks while engaged in activities that may cause the mask to become wet, like when swimming at the beach or pool. A wet mask may make it difficult to breathe. For activities like swimming, it is particularly important to maintain physical distance from others when in the water.
People who are engaged in high intensity activities, like running, may not be able to wear a mask if it causes difficulty breathing. If unable to wear a mask, consider conducting the activity in a location with greater ventilation and air exchange (for instance, outdoors versus indoors) and where it is possible to maintain physical distance from others.
People who work in a setting where masks may increase the risk of heat-related illness or cause safety concerns due to introduction of a hazard (for instance, straps getting caught in machinery) may consult with an occupational safety and health professional to determine the appropriate mask for their setting. Outdoor workers may prioritize use of masks when in close contact with other people, like during group travel or shift meetings, and remove masks when social distancing is possible. Find more information here and below.
Masks are a critical preventive measure and are most essential in times when social distancing is difficult. If masks cannot be used, make sure to take other measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread, including social distancing, frequent hand washing, and cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces.
Masks with Exhalation Valves or Vents
The purpose of masks is to keep respiratory droplets from reaching others to aid with source control. However, masks with one-way valves or vents allow air to be exhaled through a hole in the material, which can result in expelled respiratory droplets that can reach others.  This type of mask does not prevent the person wearing the mask from transmitting COVID-19 to others. Therefore, CDC does not recommend using masks for source control if they have an exhalation valve or vent.
Face Shields
A face shield is primarily used for eye protection for the person wearing it. At this time, it is not known what level of protection a face shield provides to people nearby from the spray of respiratory droplets from the wearer. There is currently not enough evidence to support the effectiveness of face shields for source control. Therefore, CDC does not currently recommend use of face shields as a substitute for masks.
However, wearing a mask may not be feasible in every situation for some people for example, people who are deaf or hard of hearing—or those who care for or interact with a person who is hearing impaired. Here are some considerations for individuals who must wear a face shield instead of a mask:
Although evidence on face shields is limited, the available data suggest that the following face shields may provide better source control than others:
Face shields that wrap around the sides of the wearer’s face and extend below the chin.
Hooded face shields.

Face shield wearers should wash their hands before and after removing the face shield and avoid touching their eyes, nose and mouth when removing it.
Disposable face shields should only be worn for a single use and disposed of according to manufacturer instructions.
Reusable face shields should be cleaned and disinfected after each use according to manufacturer instructions or by following CDC face shield cleaning instructions .
Plastic face shields for newborns and infants are NOT recommended.

Surgical Masks
Masks are not surgical masks or respirators. Currently, those are critical supplies that should continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance. Masks also are not appropriate substitutes for them in workplaces where masks or respirators are recommended or required and available.
Recent Studies:
Rothe C, Schunk M, Sothmann P, et al. Transmission of 2019-nCoV Infection from an Asymptomatic Contact in Germany. The New England journal of medicine. 2020;382(10):970-971. PMID: 32003551external icon
Zou L, Ruan F, Huang M, et al. SARS-CoV-2 Viral Load in Upper Respiratory Specimens of Infected Patients. The New England journal of medicine. 2020;382(12):1177-1179. PMID: 32074444external icon
Pan X, Chen D, Xia Y, et al. Asymptomatic cases in a family cluster with SARS-CoV-2 infection. The Lancet Infectious diseases. 2020. PMID: 32087116external icon
Bai Y, Yao L, Wei T, et al. Presumed Asymptomatic Carrier Transmission of COVID-19. Jama. 2020. PMID: 32083643external icon
Kimball A HK, Arons M, et al. Asymptomatic and Presymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Residents of a Long-Term Care Skilled Nursing Facility — King County, Washington, March 2020. MMWR Morbidity and mortality weekly report. 2020; ePub: 27 March 2020. PMID: 32240128external icon
Wei WE LZ, Chiew CJ, Yong SE, Toh MP, Lee VJ. Presymptomatic Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 — Singapore, January 23–March 16, 2020. MMWR Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 2020;ePub: 1 April 2020. PMID: 32271722external icon
Li R, Pei S, Chen B, et al. Substantial undocumented infection facilitates the rapid dissemination of novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV2). Science (New York, NY). 2020. PMID: 32179701external icon
Furukawa NW, Brooks JT, Sobel J. Evidence Supporting Transmission of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 While Presymptomatic or Asymptomatic [published online ahead of print, 2020 May 4]. Emerg Infect Dis. 2020;26(7):10.3201/eid2607.201595. Link
Oran DP, Topol Prevalence of Asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 Infection: A Narrative Review [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jun 3]. Ann Intern Med. 2020;M20-3012. PMID: 32491919external icon
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Rapid Expert Consultation on the Possibility of Bioaerosol Spread of SARS-CoV-2 for the COVID-19 Pandemic (April 1, 2020). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/25769external icon.
Schwartz KL, Murti M, Finkelstein M, et al. Lack of COVID-19 transmission on an international flight. CMAJ. 2020;192(15):E410. PMID: 32392504external icon
Anfinrud P, Stadnytskyi V, Bax CE, Bax A. Visualizing Speech-Generated Oral Fluid Droplets with Laser Light Scattering. N Engl J Med. 2020 Apr 15. doi:10.1056/NEJMc2007800. PMID: 32294341external icon
Davies A, Thompson KA, Giri K, Kafatos G, Walker J, Bennett A. Testing the efficacy of homemade masks: would they protect in an influenza pandemic? Disaster Med Public Health Prep. 2013;7(4):413-8. PMID: 24229526external icon
Konda A, Prakash A, Moss GA, Schmoldt M, Grant GD, Guha S. Aerosol Filtration Efficiency of Common Fabrics Used in Respiratory Cloth Masks. ACS Nano. 2020 Apr 24. PMID: 32329337external icon
Aydin O, Emon B, Saif MTA. Performance of fabrics for home-made masks against spread of respiratory infection through droplets: a quantitative mechanistic study. medRxiv preprint doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.04.19.20071779, posted April 24, 2020.
Ma QX, Shan H, Zhang HL, Li GM, Yang RM, Chen JM. Potential utilities of mask-wearing and instant hand hygiene for fighting SARS-CoV-2. J Med Virol. 2020. PMID: 32232986external icon
Leung, N.H.L., Chu, D.K.W., Shiu, E.Y.C. et al.Respiratory virus shedding in exhaled breath and efficacy of face masks. Nat Med. 2020. PMID: 32371934external icon
Johnson DF, Druce JD, Birch C, Grayson ML. A quantitative assessment of the efficacy of surgical and N95 masks to filter influenza virus in patients with acute influenza infection. Clin Infect Dis. 2009 Jul 15;49(2):275-7. PMID: 19522650external icon
Green CF, Davidson CS, Panlilio AL, et al. Effectiveness of selected surgical masks in arresting vegetative cells and endospores when worn by simulated contagious patients. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2012;33(5):487‐494. PMID: 22476275external icon
Top of Page

Stay home if you are having symptoms of COVID-19.
Stay at least 6 feet away from customers and coworkers, when possible.
Request that passengers avoid standing or sitting within 6 feet of each other and transit station workers.
Wear a cloth face covering or mask in public, and at work, when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. Face coverings or masks may prevent people who don’t know they have the virus from spreading it to others.
Be careful when putting on and taking off cloth face coverings or masks:
Wash your hands before putting on and after taking off the covering or mask.
Don’t touch your face covering or mask while wearing it.
Don’t touch your face, mouth, nose, or eyes while taking off the covering or mask.
Wash the covering or mask after each use.

Cloth face coverings or masks should not be worn if their use creates a new risk (for example, if they interfere with driving or vision, or contribute to heat-related illness) that exceeds their COVID-19 related benefits of slowing the spread of the virus. Cloth face coverings or masks should also not be worn by anyone who has trouble breathing or is unable to remove the covering or mask without assistance. CDC provides information on adaptations and alternatives that should be considered when cloth face coverings or masks may not be feasible.
Consider carrying a spare cloth face covering or mask.
If you are concerned about the use of cloth face coverings or masks at your workplace, discuss them with your employer.
Communicate with passengers about the importance of wearing cloth face coverings or masks.
Be aware of contact with frequently touched surfaces.
Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. You don’t need to wear gloves if you wash your hands regularly (unless they are already required for your job).
Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol if soap and water aren’t available.
Wash your hands at these key times:
Before, during, and after preparing food
Before eating food
After using the toilet
After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
After putting on, touching, or removing cloth face coverings or masks
Before and after work and work breaks
After touching frequently touched surfaces, such as fareboxes and handrails

Do not touch your face, mouth, nose, or eyes.
Cover your coughs and sneezes.
Use tissues to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.
Throw used tissues in the trash.
Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Links with this icon indicate that you are leaving the CDC website.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cannot attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website.
Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website.
You will be subject to the destination website’s privacy policy when you follow the link.
CDC is not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private website.

For more information on CDC’s web notification policies, see Website Disclaimers.

Links with this icon indicate that you are leaving the CDC website.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cannot attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website.
Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website.
You will be subject to the destination website’s privacy policy when you follow the link.
CDC is not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private website.

For more information on CDC’s web notification policies, see Website Disclaimers.

Cruise lines that have ships operating or planning to operate in U.S. waters during the period of the No Sail Order extension
Parent Company
Cruise Line
No Sail Order Response Plan Status
Ship Name
Ship Status
Commercial Travel Allowed¥
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line
Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement
Grand Celebration
Green
Yes
Walt
Disney Company

Disney Cruise Line
Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement
 Disney Dream
Green
Yes
Disney Wonder
Green
Yes
MSC Cruise Management (UK) Limited
MSC Cruises
Awaiting signed acknowledgment
MSC Armonia
Provisionally Green*
No
MSC Meraviglia
Provisionally Green*
No
MSC Preziosa
Provisionally Green*
No
MSC Seaside
Provisionally Green*
No
Norwegian
Cruise Line Holdings  

NorwegianCruise Line
Under review/revision
Norwegian Epic
Provisionally Red^
No
Norwegian Jewel
Provisionally Green*
No
Pride of America
Provisionally Green*
No
Oceania Cruises
Under review/revision
Oceania Regatta
Provisionally Green*
No
Regent Seven Seas
Under review/revision
Seven Seas Explorer
Provisionally Green*
No
Seven Seas Mariner
Provisionally Green*
No
Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd
Celebrity Cruises
Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement
Celebrity Eclipse
Green
Yes
Celebrity Edge
Green
Yes
Celebrity Equinox
Green
Yes
Celebrity Millennium
 Green
Yes
Celebrity Reflection
Green
Yes
Celebrity Silhouette
Green
Yes
Celebrity Summit
Green
Yes
Royal Caribbean International
Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement
Adventure of the Seas
Provisionally Green*
No
Brilliance of the Seas
Provisionally Green*
No
Enchantment of the Seas
Provisionally Green*
No
Freedom of the Seas
Green
Yes
Grandeur of the Seas
Provisionally Green*
No
Harmony of the Seas
Provisionally Green*
No
Independence of the Seas
Provisionally Green*
No
Liberty of the Seas
Green
Yes
Mariner of the Seas
Green
Yes
Navigator of the Seas
Red
No
Oasis of the Seas
Green
Yes
Rhapsody of the Seas
Green
Yes
Serenade of the Seas
Red
No
Symphony of the Seas
Green
Yes
Vision of the Seas
Green
Yes

*Provisionally Green: Ship meets the surveillance criteria for “Green” status, but the following have not been completed:
Review and revision of the cruise line’s No Sail Order response plan, or
Cruise line’s signed acknowledgement of a complete and accurate plan, or
Ship’s submission of a signed attestation to CDC for crew to travel commercially.
ⱽProvisionally Yellow: Ship meets the surveillance criteria for “Yellow” status, but the following have not been completed:
Review and revision of the cruise line’s No Sail Order response plan, or
Cruise line’s signed acknowledgement of a complete and accurate plan, or
Ship’s submission of a signed attestation to CDC for crew to travel commercially.
^Provisionally Red: Ship meets the surveillance criteria for “Red” status, but the following have not been completed:
Review and revision of the cruise line’s No Sail Order response plan, or
Cruise line’s signed acknowledgement of a complete and accurate plan.
¥Commercial Travel Allowed: Allowed for ships that are “Green” and have submitted a signed attestation to CDC for crew to travel commercially.
Note: The above list includes cruise ships operating in U.S. waters or seeking to operate in U.S. waters during the period of the No Sail Order extension.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does it mean for a cruise ship operator to have a plan that is complete and accurate?
A complete and accurate plan adequately addresses every element of the No Sail Order. A cruise ship operator must be in compliance with the No Sail Order, the operator’s No Sail Order response plan, and CDC’s Interim Guidance for Mitigation of COVID-19 Among Cruise Ship Crew During the Period of the No Sail Order. CDC assesses compliance through implementation checks on a sample of ships covered under a cruise ship operator’s plan. There must be no evidence of noncompliance.
What steps is CDC taking to make sure ships stay in compliance with the criteria for commercial transport of crew?
CDC will review weekly surveillance data provided by ships, and only those ships that continue to report no cases of COVID-19 or COVID-like illness will maintain this status.
What other changes can cruise ships make if they meet these criteria?
CDC is committed to helping cruise lines provide for the safety and well-being of their crew members onboard. As cruise ships are able to show they have no cases of confirmed COVID-19 or COVID-like illnesses on board, crew members will be able to resume some of their daily interactions with fellow crew members.
Some examples of decreased restrictions on cruise ships if they meet these criteria include resuming in-person meetings, events, and social gatherings; reopening bars, gyms, or other group settings onboard for crew member use; and removing requirements to wear face coverings.
What is the difference between the two attestations CDC requires under the No Sail Order?
Under the No Sail Order, cruise lines are required to develop and implement comprehensive plans to prevent, detect, respond to, and contain COVID-19 among crew members onboard. While these response plans have been under review, CDC has allowed cruise lines to disembark crew members if they submit a signed attestation stating they have complied with the requirements to safely disembark crew members. This attestation included a requirement that crew members only use noncommercial travel to disembark and reach their final destinations and do not interact with the public during travel.
Cruise lines that have a complete and accurate No Sail Order response plan may disembark crew members without a signed attestation if they use noncommercial travel and follow CDC requirements. Cruise company officials must sign an acknowledgment of the completeness and accuracy of their response plan. Cruise ships that want to use commercial travel for crew members must meet additional requirements, which include demonstrating there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 or COVID-like illness on board and submitting a signed attestation for commercial travel.
What does it mean if a cruise line is not listed on the table above?
If a cruise line is not listed, it means the cruise line is not operating and does not plan to operate any of its ships in U.S. waters during the period of the No Sail Order.
What does it mean if a cruise ship is not listed on the table above?
If a cruise ship is not listed, it means the ship is not operating in U.S. waters and does not plan to operate in U.S. waters during the period of the No Sail Order.