Tags: maine | court | kaci hickox | 3 feet | quarantine

Maine Court: Kaci Hickox 3-Feet Buffer, Travel Restrictions Not Necessary

Image: Maine Court: Kaci Hickox 3-Feet Buffer, Travel Restrictions Not Necessary
Kaci Hickox walks outside of her home to give a statement to the media on October 31, 2014 in Fort Kent, Maine. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 31 Oct 2014 01:52 PM

A Maine court order that instructed Kaci Hickox to say 3 feet away from any and all persons was thrown out Friday when a judge overturned the quarantine restrictions.

Hickox is now free to travel unrestricted, but must coordinate travel plans with state officials and continue self-monitoring for Ebola symptoms, The Associated Press reported.

The Friday decision reverses a 24-hour court order handed down Thursday that restricted Hickox from visiting public places and required her to keep a 3-foot buffer from any and all persons.

"The court is fully aware of the misconceptions, misinformation, bad science, and bad information being spread from shore to shore in our country with respect to Ebola," Judge Charles C. LaVerdiere wrote in the Friday ruling. "The court is fully aware that people are acting out of fear and that this fear is not entirely rational."

Hickox was immediately placed in mandatory quarantine last week in New Jersey when she returned to the U.S. from treating Ebola patients in West Africa. After going toe-to-toe with N.J. Gov. Chris Christie, Hickox was released home to Maine but has been going back and forth with officials there since earlier this week.

Maine health officials have maintained that they were simply following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidelines for monitoring "at risk" persons, which includes an in-home quarantine until the end of the 21-day incubation period.

"It is my opinion that the respondent should be subjected to an appropriate public health order for mandatory direct active monitoring and restrictions on movement as soon as possible and until the end of the incubation period to protect the public health and safety," Dr. Sheila Pinette, director of Maine's CDC, wrote in the Thursday petition.

Hickox has tested negative for Ebola twice and has not shown any symptoms.

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A Maine court order that instructed Kaci Hickox to say 3 feet away from any and all persons was thrown out Friday when a judge overturned the quarantine restrictions.
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Friday, 31 Oct 2014 01:52 PM
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