Woman suffers stroke, sparks medical evacuation from Antarctic to Christchurch

It is suspected a Dutch woman, 66, suffered a stroke on board a cruise vessel.
File photo

It is suspected a Dutch woman, 66, suffered a stroke on board a cruise vessel.

A tourist is being evacuated from the Antarctic after she suffered a stroke onboard a cruise ship.

The 66-year-old Dutch woman fell ill on board the MV Ortelius in Antarctic waters early on Monday morning, Maritime New Zealand said.

The tourist ship was sailing in the Ross Sea off the Antarctic ice shelf, 3600 kilometres south of New Zealand.

Medical staff on the ship recommended the woman be taken to New Zealand for further medical treatment.

The woman was flown 100km from the cruise ship to McMurdo Station on Tuesday afternoon.

"She was transported to McMurdo station by MV Ortelius' own helicopter," said Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand senior search and rescue officer Chris Henshaw.

"The woman will fly on to New Zealand on a scheduled flight on an Antarctic agency C17 plane."

The flight is scheduled to leave McMurdo station mid-afternoon on Wednesday and is expected to arrive in Christchurch by 9pm.

The woman was in a stable condition and was understood to be travelling alone.

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