ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) – The United States Embassy has just notified all passengers that everyone will be removed from the Diamond Princess cruise ship by Monday, February 24.
Elizabethton resident Dr. Arnold Hopland, who has been quarantined on the ship for two and a half weeks, informed News Channel 11 on Friday morning that the passengers were being removed due to a slight change in plans.
Dr. Hopland says he was informed that all services to guests on the Diamond Princess will end over the weekend.
Dr. Hopland had originally been told he would be staying another week and a half.
It’s still unclear as to what comes next for the Hoplands, as they have been told they won’t be allowed back into the United States for two weeks after they get off the boat.
Jeannie Hopland tested positive for the coronavirus earlier in February, which resulted in the couple being separated and Jeannie being placed in a hospital.
Dr. Hopland told News Channel 11’s Josh Smith that Jeannie recently tested positive again for the coronavirus, meaning she has tested positive twice and negative once.
An email from the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo says they are working with the CDC and other agencies to assist U.S. citizens in Japan who have been affected by the outbreak.
Dr. Hopland told News Channel 11 that very few people are left aboard the ship.
The U.S. Government repeated its belief that efforts to contain the coronavirus outbreak on the ship failed and expect everyone on board to be exposed.