A California man, Armando Rodriguez (34), has been charged and arrested for refusing to adhere to treatment for tuberculosis.

He had failed to take eight doses in just 47 days, according to KTLA-TV.

Reports say the man refused to take medication for tuberculosis because he didn’t want to risk liver damage. He said he had alcohol and methamphetamine and was concerned that TB medication would affect his liver.

“Rodriguez is charged with failing to comply with an order of the Health Department for tuberculosis control,” Stephen Taylor, San Joaquin County Deputy District Attorney said to Fox40.

Health officials have said that Rodriguez has pulmonary tuberculosis that can result in the patient coughing up blood. This form of tuberculosis can spread through air, reports Associated Press.

Tuberculosis is infectious and can spread from person to person. The disease usually affects lungs but it can also affect brain and kidneys.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one third of the world’s population is infected with TB. A total of 11,182 TB cases were reported in the United States in 2010.

The recent arrest has opened up debate of public policy versus right to refuse treatment.

"I think it's an error to confine someone in the criminal justice system for a public health crime. The whole intention is to protect the public's health. It's not to lay blame on someone." said Lawrence Gostin, a Georgetown University public health law professor reports Associated Press.

The charges against Rodriguez, if held, could keep him in prison for a year which is three months more than the nine months of treatment that he would have required to cure his disease.

According to World Health Organization, since 1995, over 46 million people have been successfully treated and an estimated 7 million lives saved through use of DOTS and the Stop TB Strategy.

But now newer forms of disease strains are emerging that are resistant to the drugs used to cure TB. WHO says that Multi-Drug Resistant TB is present virtually in every country.