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WELLINGTON (CBSMiami/AP) — Gov. Rick Scott has made a move to protect Floridians from Ebola and now he’s defending his decision.  Monday, Gov. Scott said it’s “the right thing to do” to protect Floridians.

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Appearing beside New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at a campaign event in Wellington, Scott said his executive order would ensure that the state wards off an outbreak and goes beyond actions by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“I want to make sure that we don’t do what CDC did — they got behind,” he said. “We’re not going to get behind. We’re going to be prepared.”

Gov. Scott’s weekend order mandates all people people returning from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone to take part in twice-daily health evaluations for 21 days.

Florida Department of Health officials have already identified four individuals who arrived in Florida following trips to one of the Ebola-affected countries. There are no confirmed cases of Ebola in Florida.

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“We’ve got 19.6 million people living in this state. I want them to be safe,” Scott said. “I want the 100 million tourists that we get here to be safe. I want all of our health care workers, our first responders to be safe. If you go to a Ebola-infected area when you come back you ought to be monitored by the Department of Health. It’s the right thing to do.”

In Florida, individuals who are deemed high-risk following evaluations by Health Department officials will be placed in quarantine.

Federal health officials have been critical of quarantines of medical workers returning from West Africa, saying it could discourage volunteers from traveling to the danger zone.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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