Joint Chiefs Chair Suggests 21-Day Quarantine For U.S. Military Personnel Who Served In West Africa

News outlets report on the U.S. military’s suggested guidelines for Ebola monitoring for soldiers who have served in West African nations.

New York Times: Joint Chiefs Chairman Urges 21-Day Quarantine for Troops Working in Ebola Zone
“Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recommended to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Tuesday that all members of the armed services working in Ebola-stricken West African countries undergo mandatory 21-day quarantines upon their return to the United States. Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, said that Mr. Hagel was expected to announce shortly that he would follow the recommendation…” (Cooper/Shear, 10/28).

Wall Street Journal: Joint Chiefs Urge Quarantine for U.S. Troops Back From West Africa
“…The recommendation, coming from the top officers of each of the country’s military branches, would extend a ‘controlled monitoring’ period, ordered on Monday for the Army, to the entire American military. Mr. Hagel has not yet decided whether to adopt the joint chiefs’ recommendation, officials said…” (Schwartz, 10/28).

Reuters: Obama sees different Ebola rules for U.S. military than for civilians
“President Barack Obama on Tuesday appeared to back more rigorous procedures for dealing with soldiers returning from missions to Ebola-hit West African countries, even as he criticized moves by some U.S. states to quarantine returning civilian health workers. Obama said that American military personnel were in a ‘different situation’ compared with health care workers…” (Alexander/Holland, 10/28).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

KFF Headquarters: 185 Berry St., Suite 2000, San Francisco, CA 94107 | Phone 650-854-9400
Washington Offices and Barbara Jordan Conference Center: 1330 G Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005 | Phone 202-347-5270 | Email Alerts: | |

The independent source for health policy research, polling, and news, KFF is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.