Neighbors Ready for Nina Pham to Return to Dallas Home

Former Ebola patient Nina Pham made no public appearances on her first day back in Texas after her rapid recovery and release Friday from a Maryland hospital.

Pham is believed to be staying at her family's home in Fort Worth, where road cones and a police officer ensure their privacy.

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins, who is overseeing the Dallas response to Ebola, was in touch with her family Saturday and he was at Fort Worth Meacham Airport Friday night when her chartered plane arrived.

“She bounded off that plane, jumped into her Dad’s arms, visited with some friends, even took some pictures with some people,” Jenkins said. “[She] just really seemed happy and healthy and glad to be home.”

The Presbyterian Hospital nurse became infected with the Ebola virus while treating the first Dallas Ebola patient, Thomas Eric Duncan who died Oct. 8. She was transferred to Maryland for care on Oct. 16.

Jenkins said Pham’s plans for return to work or her Dallas apartment are not clear.

“She’s got a lot of catching up to do with her sisters, with her friends. She’s looking forward to driving her car and just being able to stretch her legs and being able to do some things,” Jenkins said.

A reunion with her dog Bentley will be delayed until the dog completes Ebola monitoring on Nov. 1. So far, Bentley has tested negative for the disease.

“There’s no risk to her to be around the dog, but the top veterinarians in the state say the regimen we have the dog on, on monitoring needs to not be interrupted,” Jenkins said.

Laura Colven, who lives down the street from Nina Pham’s “M” Streets apartment, said neighbors were alarmed when a crew wearing bio-hazard suits came to decontaminate the unit two weeks ago.

“It’s a little scary having the CDC knock on your door saying someone has Ebola on your street but we have to get past that and they informed us and everything was taken care of and there’s nothing to be scared of,” Colven said.

Laura Colven and her mom Jan walked by the unit Saturday.

“We were just talking about the picture in the paper of President Obama hugging her,” Jan Colven said. “I thought maybe that’s a message to people, ‘it’s OK. There’s no need to be scared.’”

"Good for her, very happy for her. I think a lot of people were praying for her. I know we were. I think it is really a good thing that she is well,” said neighbor, Phil Schwartz.

On Saturday, 102 possible Ebola contacts were still being monitored for possible symptoms but Jenkins said the chance of another Ebola case declines every day. All contacts will complete monitoring on Nov. 7.

“We are winning the war on Ebola in Dallas, but we must stay vigilant,” Jenkins said.

NBC 5's Julie Fine contributed to this report.

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