Quarantined nurse slams ‘frightening’ treatment
A healthcare worker who tested negative for Ebola after returning from West Africa this week is criticizing her quarantine treatment at Newark Liberty International Airport.
In a first-person account published in The Dallas Morning News on Saturday, Kaci Hickox describes a “frenzy of disorganization, fear and, most frightening, quarantine” after arriving back in the U.S.
Four hours after landing in New Jersey, Hickox received a forehead temperature scan of 101 degrees Fahrenheit. She explained that she was flushed because she was “upset at being held with no explanation.”
Another three hours later, she was told she needed to go to a hospital, where she was later cleared of the virus after an oral thermometer test produced a temperature of 98.6 degrees.
After another forehead scan of 101 degrees at the hospital, the doctor told her, “There’s no way you have a fever … your face is just flushed,” she said.
The New Jersey worker from Doctors Without Borders developed a fever Friday evening shortly after being quarantined, but does not have Ebola, officials say. The worker is waiting it out in isolation at University Hospital in Newark.
Hickox is the first person quarantined for 21 days under New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s new policy, which was implemented Friday. Gov. Pat Quinn has ordered a similar policy for Illinois.
The 21-day quarantine is mandatory for doctors and healthcare workers returning from West Africa where they treated Ebola patients.
This comes two days after Dr. Craig Spencer tested positive for Ebola shortly after returning to New York City.
Ebola has ravaged through West African countries like Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, killing more than 4,900 people around the world, while several cases of the deadly virus have developed in the U.S.
This story was posted at 10:00 a.m. and updated at 4:24 p.m.