The NSW government are in a holding pattern over the Ruby Princess, as its captain was too ill to confirm the extent of the outbreak on the vessel.
NSW Minister for Health and Medical Research, Brad Hazzard, has defended NSW Health’s handling of the Ruby Princess debacle, laying the blame for the mishandling of COVID-19 patients squarely on the ship’s Captain who was too sick at the time to speak to him.
‘I tried calling him twice’ insisted Hazzard who accused the Captain of failing to inform Health officials of a potential COVID-19 outbreak aboard the ship.
‘I couldn’t make out a thing with all his coughing and spluttering the first time I rang him’ claimed Hazzard, ‘and when I rang again that afternoon, the First Captain picked up and advised that he couldn’t come to the phone because of a high-fever and breathing difficulties.’
NSW Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, rushed to her colleague’s defence noting that it would have been impossible to have made an informed decision without any hint of an outbreak.
Eleven deaths and more than 600 cases of COVID-19 have been linked to the ship.