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Pubic Health on Halloween
The Ghosts of Quarantines Past

Some lessons for today’s public health crises from the storied past of Ellis Island Immigrant Health Hospital.

Published on: October 31, 2014
Nicholas M. Gallagher is staff writer at The American Interest. You can follow him on Twitter at @ngallagherAI.
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  • Pingback: Halloween Special: What the ghosts of Ellis Island can teach us about Ebola | Ebola.Red()

  • MarkE

    A three week quarantine on an old or extant military base, e.g., Walter-Reed, with small groups of other quarantined would be a very reasonable expectation for even those “very responsible” medical people from Ebolia. I don’t think truly idealistic medical people would see this as a deterrent if it were recognized as part of the sacrifice they were making to help the sick and poor. The violators we have witnessed are young and may have poor impulse control.
    The main problem now is the apparent recklessness of the President, the Director of the CDC, and the Director of the NIH section on Infectious diseases. If they could endorse such a plan, it is possible that they could regain the confidence of the citizens. Having accomplished that, they might even be able to get the public to accept treatment of foreign patients on US soil with reassurance that extra-special precautions are being taken.

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