Victory for Maine Nurse as Judge Rules Against State Quarantine
Kaci Hickox had vowed to take legal action against her state-imposed isolation
In what has been dubbed a "victory" for nurse Kaci Hickox, who recently returned from treating Ebola patients in West Africa, a federal judge on Friday declared that the Maine government had not "met its burden" to enforce the state-imposed quarantine.
Hickox, who vowed to take legal action against the 21-day isolation mandate, said that she was "satisfied" with the ruling handed down by chief district court judge Charles C. LaVerdiere.
"[Maine] has not met its burden at this time to prove by clear and convincing evidence that limiting [Hickox’s] movements to the degree requested is 'necessary to protect other individuals from the dangers of infection'," LaVerdiere wrote in an order posted on Friday afternoon, two days after Maine Governor Paul LePage (R) posted state police outside of Hickox's home in the rural town of Fort Kent, Maine.
"[Hickox] currently does not show any symptoms of Ebola and is therefore not infectious," LaVerdiere continued. The judge did mandate that Hickox continue self-monitoring for Ebola symptoms.
Before being released back to her home state of Maine, Hickox had been forcibly held in a quarantine tent outside the Newark Liberty International Airport after arriving to New Jersey from Sierra Leone last Friday.