7 things to know about the history of the CDC's quarantine program

For 50 years the CDC has operated a quarantine program to protect people in the United States from imported infectious disease, according to STAT.

The Division of Global Migration and Quarantine is a part of the CDC's National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases in Atlanta and operates 20 strategically placed quarantine stations in cities around the country.

Here are seven things to know about the CDC quarantine program's past and present.

1. Prior to 1967 when the agency now known as the CDC took control of quarantining in the U.S., the program was housed under the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, which was rebranded in 1979 as HHS after the formation of the Department of Education, according to the CDC.

2. When the CDC took charge of quarantine efforts in 1967, the agency inherited 500 staff members and 55 stations located at every port, international airport and major border crossing.

3. In 1969, the CDC helped develop a quarantine protocol for the return of Apollo 11 as there was concern astronauts could harbor unknown pathogens from the moon. NASA astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins were quarantined for three weeks in a mobile unit aboard the USS Hornet in the Pacific Ocean, according to STAT.

Sign up for our FREE E-Weekly for more coverage like this sent to your inbox

4. The CDC made reductions in the program in the 1970s, switching focus from routine inspection of incoming vessels to program management and intervention. The shift was facilitated by an advanced surveillance system created to monitor infectious disease epidemics abroad.

5. By 1995, the CDC covered U.S. ports of entry with only seven quarantine stations. An additional station was added in 1996 in Atlanta in preparation for the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.

6. In the wake of the severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, epidemic of 2003, the federal health agency expanded the quarantine program to 18 stations, according to the CDC website.

7. The CDC now operates 20 quarantine stations located in Anchorage, Alaska; Atlanta; Boston; Chicago; Dallas; Detroit; El Paso, Texas; Honolulu; Houston; Los Angeles; Miami; Minneapolis; New York City; Newark, N.J.; Philadelphia; San Diego; San Francisco; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Seattle and Washington D.C.

More articles on infection control: 
Mumps cases approach record high in Colorado 
Team building may actually improve hand hygiene, study says 
A superbug in space: NASA sends MRSA bacteria to International Space Station

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars