77-yr-old, fully-vaccinated Marilyn Tackett of Oklahoma was on a Carnival cruise when she became very ill and was taken to a hospital in Belize where she was placed on a ventilator after suffering respiratory issues. A few days later, Ms. Tackett was taken to a hospital in Tulsa, OK where she died on August 14 after her condition worsened.
26 fully vaccinated crew members became infected with COVID on the same cruise.
According to the Houston Chronicle – The passenger and 26 crew members were immediately isolated after testing positive for the virus. Contact tracing and further testing was conducted, with no new cases reported by Aug. 11, when the ship arrived at the port of Belize City on the northeastern coast of Central America, Carnival said.
Though the ship sailed out of Texas, which bans businesses from requiring vaccinations, more than 96% of passengers were vaccinated and all but one crew member was fully vaccinated, according to the Belize tourism board.
The Gateway Pundit shared a link to a GoFundMe page set up by the family to pay for the $5,000 demanded by the hospital in Belize.
In a statement to ABC News, Carnival argued that Tackett “almost certainly did not contract COVID on our ship,” and stressed that the crew is committed to protecting the health and safety of guests.
The cruise line said it has since implemented additional health and safety measures. Vaccinated travelers will now be required to present both a proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test at check-in. Unvaccinated guests must be tested twice before boarding the ship, and again at debarkation.
The following is the full statement from Carnival:
“Carnival has implemented a suite of protocols that are designed to flex up as needed to adapt to the changing public health situation related to COVID-19. We meet the standards for a vaccinated cruise as defined by the CDC, with at least 95 percent of our guests and all of our crew being vaccinated, and then implemented additional measures, as we are now requiring vaccinated guests to present both proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test at check-in. Those few guests who cannot be vaccinated are tested twice before boarding the ship, and again at debarkation. And all guests must wear masks in the indoor areas of the ship where people gather, such as dining rooms, theaters and casinos. Unfortunately, no venue on land or at sea is COVID-free right now, but we are committed to protecting the health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities we visit and have not hesitated to act quickly and go beyond existing public health guidelines.
Specifically to your question about the death of a Carnival Vista guest:
We are very sorry to hear about the death of a guest who sailed on Carnival Vista. Regrettably, there is a fair amount of disinformation about the circumstances of this matter. The guest almost certainly did not contract COVID on our ship, and she was assisted with expert medical care on board and was ultimately evacuated from Belize after we provided a resource to her family. We have continued to provide support to her family and are not going to add to their sadness by commenting further.”