What We Know So Far
• Gov. Chris Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo continue to face questions over their Ebola quarantine policies. • Texas nurse Amber Vinson, who contracted Ebola, was released from the hospital Tuesday. • A 5-year-old boy in New York City tested negative for Ebola, but is being held at a hospital for further study. • The CDC released updated regulations for monitoring people exposed to Ebola. • The Doctors Without Borders nurse who was quarantined in New Jersey was released. • Two Senegalese schoolboys got beat up and called "Ebola" in New York City.
A lawyer for Nurse Kaci Hickox said the nurse will not comply with a 21-day quarantine, the Bangor Daily News reported.
She has not shown any symptoms of the virus and has agreed to remain quarantined for two days, her attorney said.
The Pentagon announced Tuesday that it has not decided whether to quarantine all troops returning from West Africa.
A statement from the U.S. Army on Monday announced that several returning soldiers were being held in an effective quarantine in Italy.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said he supported that decision by Army leadership, but he was not yet sure if 21 days of controlled, supervised monitoring should be extended to all troops returning from countries fighting Ebola in Africa. About 700 U.S. service members are currently assisting in the response to Ebola overseas, and several thousand more could be deployed in the coming weeks.
President Obama: U.S. policies should not discourage American healthcare workers from going to West Africa.
Obama said Tuesday the CDC's revised guidelines are "based in science" and are "tailored to the circumstances" of every healthcare worker returning to the U.S.
He said policies should "support the incredible heroism" shown by American healthcare workers leading the fight against Ebola in West Africa.
"We want to make sure that we understand that they are doing God's work over there, and they're doing that to keep us safe," he said on the White House South Lawn. "And I want to make sure every policy we put into place is supportive of their efforts."
Obama's remarks on the Ebola response in the U.S. came after confusion and anger generated by new quarantine orders issued by New York and New Jersey's governors on Friday.
He called the revised guidelines issued by the CDC "sensible."
He said that the only way to keep the American people safe was to stop the epidemic at its source. The U.S. should ensure the talents, skill and compassion of American healthcare workers can be deployed to help West African countries deal with the epidemic, Obama said
"It's important for the American people to remember that only two people so far have contracted Ebola on American soil." Obama said. "This disease can be contained. It will be defeated."
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday said the nurse quarantined in New Jersey was "disrespected."
The mayor said that while he respects the the authority of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to set health policies for his state, he thought that the nurse who was held in quarantine after returning from West Africa was not treated appropriately.
"She did not deserve what happened to her," de Blasio told reporters during a news conference at a fire house where he praised first responders who handled the city's first Ebola case. "She was not treated with respect. People who return from serving should be treated like heroes."
The nurse, Kaci Hickox, had treated Ebola patients in West Africa. She said she did not have symptoms when she arrived at Newark Liberty International Airport on Friday, but registered a low-grade fever because she was flustered. Gov. Christie's mandatory quarantine policies, which he announced Friday, meant she had to stay in a tent inside a Newark hospital.
Hickox, who tested negative for the virus, vocally complained about the treatment she received during quarantine, calling it "inhumane." Gov. Christie has defended his decision to institute a quarantine, though he has since allowed Hickox to spend the remaining days in Maine, her home state,
At the Tuesday press conference, de Blasio also praised the members of the Fire Department of New York who transported Dr. Craig Spencer, the city's first and so far only Ebola patient, from his apartment in Harlem to Bellevue Hospital. He added that the city is prepared to deal with the virus, in part because of advance preparations taken in the wake of the September 11 attacks, which include 36 ambulances and 4 fire engines designed to deal with contagious pathogens.
Amber Vinson has been released from Emory Hospital in Atlanta.
The Texas nurse said she is "so grateful to be well. First and foremost I want to thank God."
She thanked her family for being at her side "every minute, every day."
"While this is a day for celebration...I ask we not lose focus on the thousands of families who continue to labor under the burden of this disease" in Africa, she said.
Emory's Dr. Bruce Ribner said he and other health care workers "have determined that Ms. Vinson has recovered...she can return to her family, the community and to her life, without any concerns about transmitting this virus to any other individuals."
The 5-year-old patient in New York fully cleared after negative Ebola test; Spencer remains in serious condition.
The boy's fever was caused by a respiratory illness, the NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation said in a statement. He will be removed from isolation and remain hospitalized at Bellevue.
The Ebola patient at Bellevue, Dr. Craig Spencer, remains in serious but stable condition.
Nurse Kaci Hickox is back home in Maine.
Her lawyer said she's in an "undisclosed location," according to the Associated Press, after being driven back from New Jersey:
Her partner's home in Fort Kent was quiet with no sign of activity.
Maine health officials have announced that she agreed to be quarantined at home. That's a step beyond what's required by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines that call for monitoring for health care providers who show no symptoms after treating Ebola patients.
Christie says the CDC doesn't want to admit that "we were right and they were wrong."
Gov. Chris Christie, facing criticism over his mandatory quarantine policy for health care workers returning from Ebola-stricken countries, turned the blame on federal health officials during an interview on NBC on Tuesday.
Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the measure on Friday. It resulted in a Doctors Without Borders nurse, who didn't show clear signs of Ebola, being quarantined in a tent at a hospital facility in New Jersey for three days. The nurse Kaci Hickox, the United Nations, and the CDC's director criticized the quarantine policy.
The CDC, in an effort to unify states' response to Ebola around the nation, released revised guidelines Monday.
"The CDC has been incrementalists on this," Christie said on NBC. "This newest guidance, from my perspective, is incredibly confusing. And by the way, what's the difference when someone is considered to be high risk — you don't want them on public transportation, you don't want them at public gatherings and you want them to work from home. That sounds like quarantine to me."
"I understand that the CDC has been behind on this," Christie added. "Folks got infected in Texas because they were behind."
Christie said that Hickox was only quarantined because she had a fever after arriving at the airport, which she denies. He insisted that if she didn't have those "symptoms, our policy would have been to send her back to Maine and ask her to quarantine at home." Hickox was released after about three days in New Jersey.
Christie added, "I'm going to be on the right side" of science and public opinion on Ebola.
Today Show host Matt Lauer also asked Christie about CDC Director Dr. Anthony Fauci calling the quarantine "draconian." Christie said, "I think Dr. Fauci is responding, unfortunately, as are many of the people from the CDC, in a really hyperbolic way because they've been wrong before. And now they're incrementally taking steps toward the policy that we put in effect in New Jersey.
He added that six other states and the U.S. Army have implemented similar measures.
"This is because [the CDC doesn't] want to admit that we're right and they were wrong," Christie said. "I'm sorry about that."
Gov. Chris Christie sharply criticized the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday:
Facing questions on NBC about his plan for a mandatory 21-day quarantine for anyone who had contact with an Ebola patient in West Africa, Christie went on the offensive against the CDC.
He criticized the agency as "incrementalists" and said they have "been behind on this," in reference to their response to Ebola in the U.S.
The U.S. Army on Monday placed soldiers returning from an Ebola-related mission in West Africa into “controlled monitoring” for 21 days.
About 700 U.S. service members are currently in West Africa, and their numbers could grow to 3,900 in coming weeks, the Department of Defense said.