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Carnival Cruise Line rejects ‘gruesome death’ allegations

June 17, 2019 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Carnival Cruise Line has rejected allegations, laid out in a lawsuit, that it refused to let a dying man off a ship to get medical care and left his family “to watch on in horror at his mistreatment and decline into a gruesome death”.

Carnival has extended its condolences to the family but insists “the lawsuit is not accurate”.

The cruise line maintains that the treatment of Jeffrey Eisenman, 65, who died of a heart attack, was arranged in consultation with his family, NBC News in the US has reported.

The lawsuit contends that Eisenman was not allowed to disembark while the ship, Carnival Sunshine was docked, leaving him to die a painful death as the ship sailed to its next destination.

The lawsuit was filed last Tuesday in Miami federal court on behalf of Eisenman’s wife Linda and two adult children, who were all aboard the Carnival Sunshine last December for a family cruise.

The lawsuit alleges: “Jeffrey Eisenman died onboard while confined to the medical center of the Carnival Sunshine against his will. His family was forced to watch on in horror at his mistreatment and decline into a gruesome death.”

According to the lawsuit, Eisenman and family sailed from the Florida port of Cape Canaveral on 1 December 2018. His family claims that two days later, on 3 December, he began to feel unwell as the ship was docked at Grand Turk Island in the Caribbean.

The suit says that an hour later, the ship’s doctor diagnosed Eisenman as having suffered a “major heart attack” and said he would need a stent implanted in his heart. A stent is a splint placed temporarily inside a blood vessel to aid healing or relieve an obstruction.

Carnival Sunshine

The suit claims Eisenman’s insurance policy included coverage for air evacuation if necessary, but the ship’s doctor told the family Eisenman would not be able to get off the ship because someone else had to be medically disembarked first, even though they “begged and pleaded” to disembark.

NBC News added that it had contacted Carnival and the cruise line denied the characterisation of events in the family’s lawsuit.

“We are very sorry for the Eisenman family’s loss, but the scenario that is alleged in the lawsuit is not accurate,” Carnival Cruise Lines stated.

“Our onboard medical team followed all proper procedures to attend to a guest who became critically ill very quickly, including liaising with the local hospital which was not equipped to handle his condition. Mr. Eisenman’s treatment plan and keeping him on the ship was formulated in consultation with his family.”

The lawsuit, in which the Eisenman family seeks damages for loss of support, loss of inheritance, funeral expenses and court costs, among other things, is working its way through the legal system.

Written by Peter Needham

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