Governor Andrew Cuomo said travelers returning from West Africa who were exposed to Ebola will be allowed to stay in their homes under New York’s 21-day quarantine, with lost income to be reimbursed by the state if not by their employer.” – Bloomberg Politics
A week ago I posted an idea for a health-centric civil defense program. Points 3 & 4 focused on distributing the information and gear needed to quarantine at home. Point 5 suggested incentivizing home quarantine by protecting people’s jobs and incomes – even if this meant the state had to pay them. Point 8 suggested mandatory quarantines at borders, but only if people were giving adequate housing for their short stays.
I doubt anyone from the State of New York reads my blog and picked up the idea here… but I do think the practical ideas I often post under subheadings toward the ends of my posts contain practical and implementable ideas. In this case, Cuomo’s office simply came to the same conclusions I did.
Practically speaking, you can’t quarantine all suspected infected people in hospitals. There just aren’t enough beds or staff to care for them. So the most obvious place for these folks to stay is at home. The problem with that is that you have to trust that people will stay put; so to increase those odds you need to incent them with guarantees of no loss of income – at the very least. You also need to give them the gear and information to take care of themselves if an epidemic breaks out. There is no epidemic in the USA at this point so its the perfect time to prepare.