Tags: Ebola Outbreak | Jason Chaffetz | quarantine | Ebola | patient contact

Chaffetz: Quarantine Anyone Who Has Ebola Patient Contact

By    |   Friday, 24 October 2014 07:32 PM

Anyone who has had direct contact with an Ebola patient should be put in quarantine upon their return to the United States, Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz said Friday.

"I just don’t think you can have somebody with direct contact with Ebola patients and then allow them to go bowling in New York City. That’s just not going to work," said Chaffetz on CNN's "New Day" program Friday, reports Politico.

His comments were made after Dr. Craig Spencer, 33, was diagnosed with Ebola in New York City. In the week before Spencer's diagnosis, he went jogging, visited a coffee stand in Manhattan, rode a taxi, took the subway, went bowling and went out to dinner, CNN reports.

He did not report symptoms until Thursday,when he was running a 100.3 degree fever, but he did report feeling fatigued on Tuesday, even though he had not had a fever at that point.

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, to which Chaffetz belongs, met Friday on the Ebola threat, and the GOP lawmaker said he's concerned for troops stationed in affected areas, echoing other lawmakers' calls for quarantines and bans on travel.

"I don’t buy into the idea of self-quarantines, that’s obviously not working," Chaffetz said. "And we’re sending a lot of mixed signals, and I think that’s part of the discussion as well."

Meanwhile, Chaffetz said the government's level of preparedness is "not a pretty picture," and criticized new Ebola czar Ron Klain, who did not appear at Friday's meeting.

"He’s been on the job, I know, since only Wednesday," Chaffetz said. "He refused to come, I think that gets him off on the wrong foot, I think the country would like to hear from him and what he’s doing."

New York Gov. Mario Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie called for calm, not panic, and Cuomo said that "there's no reason for New Yorkers to panic or feel that they have anything to worry about on the subway system."

However, later on Friday, the governors announced that healthcare workers returning from treating Ebola patients are to be placed under a mandatory quarantine, reports Time.

"Since taking office, I have erred on the side of caution when it comes to the safety and protection of New Yorkers, and the current situation regarding Ebola will be no different," Cuomo said. "The steps New York and New Jersey are taking today will strengthen our safeguards to protect our residents against this disease and help ensure those that may be infected by Ebola are treated with the highest precautions."

The rules now require that New York and New Jersey state health department staff to be on the ground at JFK Airport in New York and at Newark Liberty Airport in New Jersey to implement the mandatory quarantine and to determine if other travelers should be quarantined or hospitalized.

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Anyone who has had direct contact with an Ebola patient should be put in quarantine upon their return to the United States, Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz said Friday.
Jason Chaffetz, quarantine, Ebola, patient contact
Friday, 24 October 2014 07:32 PM
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