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Report: United Won’t Tell Passengers About COVID-Positive Customer Who Died

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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


Here’s hoping the passengers who flew United 591 on December 14 are paying attention to the news.

That was the flight during which a passenger died after suffering a cardiac arrest. Well, it turns out the deceased was also reportedly COVID-19 positive — and experienced coronavirus symptoms prior to boarding.

TMZ wrote today that United apparently won’t proactively contact the flight’s passengers to alert them of the COVID positive passenger. Why? Well, the Thirty-Mile Zoners say United’s excuse is, “they’re not medical professionals so it’s not up to them.” (True, but they do have a medical director on staff…)

But the airline reportedly gave the flight’s manifest to the CDC — and United said it’s that agency’s job to get in touch with the flight’s passengers. TMZ said that the flight’s passengers it has spoken with have not yet been contacted by the CDC.

Now, I’m no lawyer. But from my perspective, it kind of seems like United is doing whatever it can to cover its rear-end. I can’t say I blame them in that regard — but it also seems like kind of a shady move. Perhaps readers who are attorneys and airline professionals can weigh in on this in the Comments section.

 

Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


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3 Comments

  1. While is may not be the best take, United is completely right here. Having dealt with several of these cases in our office (large fortune 100), this is absolutely the CDC’s responsibility to handle, not United or any individual company. If they took it upon themselves to notify customers they expose themselves to legal action from either those purportedly sick or if the customers who are notified should the report be inaccurate. Contact tracing is a delicate balance but ultimately HIPPA rules tie the hands of corporations even if it appears nonsensical.

  2. Jeffery Carrithers Reply

    This case must be highlighted because the life of all the passengers who were boarded on the flight. United must have to inform the passengers so that they would take precautionary measures.

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