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Fair treatment of people who have communicable diseases

Your opinionated brother-in-law from the U.K., Larry is watching the local news when an update is presented about how many people in the area have been positively identified as carrying the H1N1 virus. Larry weighs in on the issue, "If I were in charge, I'd snatch up anyone who even sneezes and send them to a reservation, like them leper colonies in the olden days. That would put an end to this 'swine flu' stuff real quick, and keep innocent folks like me from catching it!"

continue your letter to Larry by adding a Discussion about how people with communicable diseases are treated in our society and the measures that are taken to protect the health of uninfected individuals.

Please think about the following questions: Are people who have serious communicable diseases treated fairly in our society? Is it appropriate for health professionals to resort to drastic measures (such as martial law or quarantine procedures) to protect the health of uninfected individuals?

Solution Preview

First, one only need to look back at what happened to MARY in the TYPHOID MARY scenario, to get a direct understanding of how Larry is out of touch with the situation. In the said case, Mary was punished for something for which she was merely a carrier and really did little wrong. Where reservations are quoted in this saga, the illusion that there is a fenced in vicinity that people are self-contained, in a hostage sort of mentality, is just an illusion. In modern day reservations, the people who reside in those areas, are free to come and go and the land is merely theirs to do as they please, according to the governing body of their land. The other problem with Larry's mindset is that there are viruses and microbes that are old and equally destructive as they were in the 'olden days.' Additionally, new mutated micro-organisms evolve all the time, in the way that there is a new flu bug each year and vaccinations often can't keep up with the constant change.

There are laws in place to protect those that have communicable diseases and also the general ...

Solution Summary

Laws about communicable diseases are discussed.

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