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Travel Health & Safety Blog

Rapid COVID-19 testing onboard superyachts

How rapid COVID-19 testing is being used on board superyachts

Working onboard a superyacht is a challenging job in normal circumstances. On top of managing guest profiles, itineraries and needs, captains and crew now have the additional task of mitigating the well-known risks of a pandemic.

For some vessels the emergence of COVID-19 has resulted in such measures as more rigorous cleaning and regular mask use and for others it’s been the purchase of their own testing equipment.

Having an onboard testing device is by no means a solution for every yacht, but over the past half a year, we’ve seen their popularity increase, for a number of reasons.

Deciding whether such an option will work for you requires careful consideration of a number of factors – you’ll have to think about why you want to test, who you want to test and how often you want to test. Alongside that you’ll need a level of medical understanding – that’s where we come in.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A COVID TESTING SOLUTION

Testing onboard a superyacht requires a different set of criteria to many other settings. Download this one-page pdf to read our 4 considerations when choosing a Covid-19 testing solution. 

HOW TO SET UP YOUR ONBOARD TESTING SOLUTION

Each of the COVID-19 testing solutions we recommend are manufactured by companies with a strong background in medical testing. To determine the most appropriate option for your vessel and effectively set it up, we would go through the following steps with you:


To set up your consultative call with our medical team, contact your Account Manager or contact us here.

HOW ONE CUSTOMER USES THEIR TESTING EQUIPMENT TO MAINTAIN SAFE OPERATIONS

Through the guidance of MedAire, one of our customers recently implemented a solution which includes the Bosch Vivalytic PCR machine. The Medic onboard, who uses the equipment, told us that:

"With rapid COVID-19 testing onboard we are able to not only do screening for joining guests and crew as well as tour operators and pilots, we are able to confirm or rule out COVID-19 if a crew/guest presents with symptoms.

"It is a great and very useful investigative tool for the Medical Bay to have."


Brent Palmer, the Director of Education at MedAire, (virtually) leads the training onboard a number of vessels and says: "the ability to administer onboard testing provides validation that a vessel’s risk mitigation strategies (point of entry screening, temperature checks, mask usage) in protecting against COVID-19 have been effective."

EXAMPLE TESTING PROCESS

1. A sample is taken using a swab
2. The swab is broken into liquid inside a sample tube
3. After two minutes, a pipette is used to take a sample of the liquid from the tube to add into the cartridge.
4. The machine processes the cartridge and (machine dependent) displays the results as a print-out and on the screen, sometimes within hours.


Vivalytic

LOOKING TOWARDS A POST-PANDEMIC WORLD

While a worldwide vaccination rollout provides hope for a return to normality, rapid testing looks to play its part well into the future.

It's important to also note that many of the devices we recommend don’t just test for COVID-19, they also enable you to test for STIs and other viruses, like Influenza A and B, Dengue and Zika to name a few.

This means that such equipment is not just a solution to the current pandemic, but an investment in the future health of your crew.

To view the testing equipment we currently recommend, download the pdf here. If you're interested in deploying a testing solution, we recommend contacting your Account Manager.

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Yachts