Medical Care at Sea.


This section provides information on the medical treatment that is available on board ships.

There will always be a designated person onboard who’ll be responsible for medical issues and has had advanced medical training. It’s unlikely that there’ll be a doctor on board except in exceptional cases, e.g. larger cruise ships. If your complaint is serious, advice can be sought from ashore and, if necessary, arrangements will be made to get you to a shore side facility as soon as possible.

It is important that you take care of yourself and take sensible precautions at all time. Should you feel the need to seek medical advice, do so at the earliest opportunity. Should shore side facilities be needed these will be much easier to access whilst a ship is in port so don’t leave it until after the vessel sails for a long passage to seek advice.

You are unlikely to be taking long term medication as such treatment will often lead to you being unable to obtain an ENG 1 medical certificate, or lead to restrictions in one being issued. If you are, make sure you have sufficient supplies for any eventuality. Remember ships get diverted, delayed by bad weather or held up for any number of reasons, so make sure supplies are sufficient to cover such scenarios.

Remember, you have a duty of care to all seafarers and other individuals sailing on your vessel. If you see anyone in need of assistance, offer help if you can or raise the alarm.

Updated:     February 2017.