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Health News Florida

Missing TB Patient Found

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Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office

Tampa Police have found a homeless woman who left Tampa General Hospital this past weekend before she had learned that she has tuberculosis.

The Tampa Bay Times reports Sarah Williams, 53, was located Tuesday evening at S. Dale Mabry Highway and Inman Avenue. Officers called for an ambulance, which took Williams back to Tampa General.

ABC Action News had earlier reported that Williams left the hospital on Saturday before finding out she was positive for TB, and that a Tampa General doctor alerted the police on Sunday.

A police spokesman said the alert was issued for the welfare of the public, but the physician's identity and motive for alerting police were not known.  Release of patients' identifying information is usually withheld under federal law, but there are certain exceptions in the interest of public health or interest of the patient herself.