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Health Workers in U.S. at Risk for Ebola Should Be on No-Fly List, Perry Says

Veronica Zaragovia/KUT
Gov. Rick Perry speaks at a press conference about Ebola at the Capitol on Oct. 17, 2014.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is calling it "indefensible" that one of the nurses who cared for Thomas Eric Duncan, the Liberian man who was treated at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital and died last week, would be cleared to fly from Ohio to Dallas. She had told health officials she had a low fever before being cleared to fly. 

Gov. Perry is also joining fellow Texan Sen. Ted Cruz in pressing for a travel ban to and from the West African countries most affected by the Ebola virus, exempting people like health care workers. 

He’s calling on Obama to restrict the travel of people who’ve been in close contact with the virus. 

"He does have the authority to put a no-fly list that the airlines then respect, and that is an option that I ask him to consider to clearly send the message," Perry said at a press conference.

The state’s newly-created Texas Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response is recommending that Texas get Ebola treatment centers and more testing labs to hasten diagnosis. The task force is also calling on the Legislature to give the head of the state’s health department, presently Dr. David Lakey, more power to enforce quarantines for those exposed to Ebola.