In a sudden reversal, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Monday that the state will release the quarantined American nurse who had been confined in a hospital isolation tent upon arrival from West Africa despite showing no signs of Ebola. As USA Today reports, Kaci Hickox, 33, was the first person pulled aside at Newark Liberty International Airport on Friday under Christie's new strict mandatory quarantine-for-21-days rules. It appears, as Reuters reports, Christie got a tap on the shoulder as The White House has told states that have imposed mandatory quarantines for some travelers from Ebola-hit West Africa that the policy could impede the fight against the disease. Additionally, in true litigious American style, Hickox plans to sue.
Christie makes a strong statement last night...
In a telephone interview with CNN, Hickox, a native Texan who now lives in Maine, said her confinement at University Hospital in Newark was "inhumane" and akin to being in prison. She said she has no symptoms and tested negative for Ebola.
"This is an extreme that is really unacceptable, and I feel like my basic human rights have been violated," Hickox who said on CNN's State of the Union.
24 hours after making the following statement: "I don't think when you're dealing with something as serious as this you can count on a voluntary system."This is the government's job." N
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Monday that the state will release the quarantined American nurse who had been confined in a hospital isolation tent upon arrival from West Africa despite showing no signs of Ebola.
As USA Today reports, Christie writes that Hickox "has thankfully been symptom free for the last 24 hrs. After being evaluated by CDC & her clinicians the patient is being discharged."
The move came only hours after Christie defended his state's strict new regulations for medical aids returning from Ebola-stricken West Africa.
The White House has told states that have imposed mandatory quarantines for some travelers from Ebola-hit West Africa that the policy could impede the fight against the disease.
The White House voiced its concern to the governors of New York and New Jersey about the potential impact of quarantine orders, a senior administration official said on Sunday.
"We have let the governors of New York, New Jersey, and other states know that we have concerns with the unintended consequences of policies not grounded in science may have on efforts to combat Ebola at its source in West Africa," the Obama administration official said in a statement.
Kaci Hickox, a nurse placed in 21-day quarantine in a New Jersey hospital after returning from treating Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, will contest her quarantine in court, her attorney said on Sunday, arguing the order violates her constitutional rights.
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We are sure they have it all under control - they have been preparing for months... and Ebola is so hard to catch.
The White House is working on new guidelines for such health care workers, according to a senior administration official.
The new guidelines are expected to be unveiled in the coming days, the official said. The official added that the administration is consulting with the states as they develop the new rules.
President Obama met Sunday with his Ebola response team, including "Ebola czar" Ron Klain and other public health and national security officials. According to the White House, the president said any measures concerning returning health care workers "should be crafted so as not to unnecessarily discourage those workers from serving."
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power said quarantines may discourage health workers from traveling to West Africa to help block the disease at its source.
"If you put everyone in one basket, even people who are clearly no threat, then we have the problem of the disincentive of people that we need," Fauci said on ABC's This Week. "Let's not forget the best way to stop this epidemic and protect America is to stop it in Africa, and you can really help stopping it in Africa if we have our people, our heroes, the health care workers, go there and help us to protect America."