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Exclusive: Inside an Ebola Quarantine

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[Read Marcus DiPoala’s frontline photo-essay at TheMudflats]

I got back to the U.S. from covering the Ebola outbreak in Liberia on October 19. I went because very few reporters were there, and the ones that were there were only staying for a week or so. I felt that this story was too important to not be on the ground, so I bought a plane ticket and went.

On the way back, I had to go through three levels of screening, and by the time I had cleared customs at JFK International Airport in Queens, NY, I thought I was done.

Last Saturday I got a phone call from the NYC Department of Health, working in concert with the CDC, telling me they wanted to begin active monitoring. I told them I wasn’t in New York anymore, I was in Chicago. They said they’d have to refer me to the Illinois Department of Public Health and that the department here would want to take my temperature within 24 hours.

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Four days later, I went on WBEZ’s morning show to talk about my experience with the Ebola quarantine. A couple hours after I got off the air, I got a call from the Chicago Department of Health. They were going to get in the car and come take my temperature. Immediately.

Thirty minutes later, I and WBEZ’s Monica Eng welcomed the two public health nurses into my apartment. They didn’t want to be filmed or recorded, but it’s my apartment, and I believe the public has the right to know about the Ebola screening process.

They were friendly and knowledgeable. One of them had 29 years working in public health. They watched me take my temperature, noted it down, then told me to call 311 and to ask for the infectious diseases doctor on call if developed a fever. They also said they would be back on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, until my incubation period was over. We chatted and joked for a little while.

Then they left, with a promise to return. My most recently-taken temperature was at 8:39 p.m. Central Time. My body temperature is 97.9 F.

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Comments
One Response to “Exclusive: Inside an Ebola Quarantine”
  1. guess what? says:

    Guess What? Tobacco leaves at a certain stage have the ingredients to make a vaccine for Ebola…
    Guess What? Tobacco plants all over the world have are at the stage to be harvested for the vaccine…
    Guess What? There is no profit in it then…

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