Thursday, May 31, 2007

TB scare

Now this pisses me off. A patient with TB who was asked to not travel, intentionally flew to Europe on a commercial jet without even a mask, sparking attempts now by the CDC to track down and test the other passengers.
The man flew to Paris on May 12 aboard Air France Flight 385, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He and his bride also took four shorter flights while in Europe — Paris to Athens on May 14; Athens to Thira Island May 16; Mykonos Island to Athens May 21; and Athens to Rome May 21 — but CDC officials said there was less risk of infection during the shorter hops compared to the trans-Atlantic flights, which each lasted eight hours or more. It was while the man was in Rome that he learned further U.S. tests had determined his TB was the rare, extensively drug-resistant form, far more dangerous than he knew. They told him turn himself over to Italian health officials and not to fly on any commercial airlines.
Instead, on May 24, the man flew from Rome to Prague on Czech Air Flight 0727, then flew to Montreal aboard Czech Air Flight 0104 and drove into the U.S., according to CDC officials. Officials are trying to contact people who sat within five rows of him on the two longest flights for testing.
After finally finding out that he had an extensively drug-resistant form, he began to fear for his life and got his butt back to the US for treatment.
Maybe I'm being too judgmental, and true, it was his wedding, but in his selfishness he put numerous people at risk. Even if it wasn't the drug-resistant TB strain. Some may argue that the federally-ordered quarantine of the 31-year old is harsh, but under the circumstances he has shown himself to be irresponsible and selfish. What do you think?