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Man with TB Arrested for Not Following Medical Treatment

Tuberculosis

His mugshot includes a mesh mask over his nose and mouth, because the criminal was arrested for not following medical treatment protocol.

Armando Rodriguez, 34, has tuberculosis and according to San Joaquin County Public Health officials, he was ignoring his treatment and refusing to take his medications.

Officials say Rodriguez was putting his entire community at risk by not following the medical treatment he signed off on last month. They asked Stockton Police to pick him up.

“Rodriguez is charged with failing to comply with an order of the Health Department for tuberculosis control,” said Stephen Taylor, San Joaquin County Deputy District Attorney.

Tuberculosis is a bacteria that can become airborne and spread when an infected person coughs, sneezes, speaks or sings.

“Really, we do have so few cases because the Health Department does a heroic job of working with people and getting them to cooperate,” said Taylor.

However, court documents say that was not the case with Rodriguez. Less than a month after getting out of the hospital, he started ignoring the nine-month treatment plan.

He returned unused antibiotics when a health case manager visited. He told the woman he had been on alcohol all weekend, had taken meth, and didn’t want to hurt his liver by taking the drugs. He has 8 missed doses documented in just 47 days.

Rodriguez was supposed to be in court Wednesday for his arraignment, however he cannot step foot in the courtroom until he passes a series of three health tests.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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