News : ICS Guidance for Ship Operators and Roadmap for vaccination of seafarers

International Chambers of Shipping (ICS) has revised the Guidance for Ship Operators for the Protection of the Health of Seafarers. The fourth edition replaces the previous guidance which was published in September 2020 and is for use on all types of ship and tries to take into account the needs of both cargo and passenger ships.
It is recognised that cargo ships are unlikely to have a fully trained doctor or nurse on board and that medical treatment on cargo ships will be provided by an STCW trained crew member.

The updated guidance contains:
  • An updated introduction reflecting the current situation of the COVID-19;
  • A new section on myth-busting advice during the COVID-19 pandemic;
  • A new section on COVID-19 vaccines;
  • Updated downloadable posters, including three new posters featuring safety guidance for ashore and onboard and mental health support for seafarers; and
  • Two updated annexes with guidance on the use of masks and decision making for possible or confirmed COVID-19 cases on board.
ICS has also published a ‘Roadmap for Vaccination of International Seafarers’. It sets procedures for a programme that can be implemented by all stakeholders concerned to facilitate safe ship crew vaccination during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cargo container ship

The roadmap:
  • Proposes a framework dedicated to seafarers, for the establishment of vaccination centres in hubs, and
  • Describes aspects to consider in a vaccination programme for seafarers, such as:
  • Planning, setting up and operating a vaccination centre, including vaccine logistics and distribution;
  • Rostering seafarers and associated documentation; and
  • Legal/liability considerations

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