Coronavirus: U.S. cancer patient aboard Grand Princess could miss chemotherapy

Among the 2,400 passengers stranded off the California coast on a cruise ship carrying at least 21 people infected with coronavirus, few people aboard likely have more to lose than Kari Kolstoe, a retiree from North Dakota with stage-4 cancer.

Kolstoe, 60, said she and her husband, Paul, 61, had looked forward to the Grand Princess cruise to Hawaii as a brief, badly needed respite from the grind of medical intervention she has endured for the past 18 months.

Now facing the prospect of a two-week quarantine far from their home in Grand Forks, she worries their getaway cruise will end up causing a fateful delay in her next round of chemotherapy, scheduled to begin early next week.

“It’s very unsettling,” she said in a cellphone interview from the ship on Friday. “It’s still a worry that I’m going to not get back.”

Besides the implications for cancer treatment is the fear of falling ill from exposure to a respiratory virus especially dangerous to older people with chronic health conditions and suppressed immunity.

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