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A Clash of Rights in TB Cases

Posted May 3, 2007 9:27 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A drug-resistant strain of tuberculosis pits the rights of those who are infected against those of the public.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the percentage of patients infected with the new, more virulent strain of TB rose from 3 percent in 2000 to 11 percent in 2004, according to the Washington Post.

Illustrating the clash of rights is Robert Daniels, who is confined to a hospital's jail ward because he did not wear a mask in public and was not taking his medications.

"We have to face the possibility that restrictive measures may be necessary to control what could become a global pandemic," Ross Upshur, director of the Joint Center for Bioethics at the University of Toronto, told the Post.


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