Wilhelmsen has been working closely with a wide number of stakeholders in the US to be able to offer COVID-19 vaccinations to seafarers. Our ships agents have already been successful in facilitating the vaccination of crews on a number of vessels around the US coastline. Working closely with our medical providers and Port Authorities, Seafarer welfare bodies and the US Customs & Border Protection Agency, this has been a big team effort. We would like to thank everyone who is helping to make the lives of those at sea more tolerable. The logistics around crew vaccinations vary significantly depending if the service is provided ashore, alongside or even offshore. Access to the Johnson & Johnson single dose vaccine can be challenging so we have to handle each request on a case by case basis. The US Customs & Border Protection Agency have also advised the following for crew leaving a vessel to obtain the vaccine:
- If the crew has a D-1 Visa, transportation companies can transport them to an appropriate facility in the area offering the vaccine upon the completion of the necessary paperwork.
- If a crew is detained on board, proper paperwork must be submitted to CBP requesting approval for the crew member to visit a “designated” facility. They will be required to go to a facility close to the vessel if approved by CBP (note in some circumstances guards may be required).
We will do all we can to assist your crew to get COVID-19 vaccinations. However, the situation is pretty fluid but we will continue to monitor the situation and keep our customers updated. To check availability of Crew vaccinations in your designated US ports, please check our website locations to find the relevant contact details https://www.wilhelmsen.com/contacts-locations/locations/north-america/united-states-of-america-usa/