A nurse who was being quarantined at a New Jersey hospital after working with Ebola patients in Sierra Leone criticized her treatment on Saturday as an overreaction after an initial test found that she did not have the virus.
“I am scared about how health care workers will be treated at airports when they declare that they have been fighting Ebola in West Africa,” the nurse, Kaci Hickox, wrote in an essay on the website of The Dallas Morning News, in collaboration with a friend who works for the paper. “I am scared that, like me, they will arrive and see a frenzy of disorganization, fear, and most frightening, quarantine.”
She described being held in isolation for about seven hours at Newark Liberty International Airport on Friday, left alone for long stretches and given only a granola bar when she said she was hungry.
Ms. Hickox, 33, was placed in quarantine under a new policy announced Friday by the governors of New York and New Jersey. All people entering the United States through Newark Liberty and Kennedy Airports will now be quarantined for 21 days if they had direct contact with Ebola patients in Guinea, Liberia or Sierra Leone, even if they show no symptoms of infection.