Tuesday, October 18, 2011

News Brief: "First Ever" Fall in Global TB

Joshua Dower

In the United States, tuberculosis is not as common as it was a century ago, but this disease is still an issue that affects the lives of millions of people around the world. However, the illness’ impact seems to be lessening. According to the World Health Organization, the number of people around the world infected with tuberculosis has fallen for the first time in history. Additionally, less people have died from TB this year than have in the past ten years. This seems like a step in the right direction to eradicate this disease and save many lives, but it is still necessary to fund continued research and medical support in the face of multi-drug resistant strains of TB.

This great progress is mostly due to improvements in Brazil, Kenya, and Tanzania, as well as China, where the death after infection with TB has fallen 80% since 1990. Though this disease seems to be less deadly than it once was, it still impacts 1/3 of the world’s population. Between rapid screenings for TB and modern medicine, further steps can be made to end TB’s classification as a deadly disease. But the WHO warns that without further funding, millions of people will go without treatment and will die as a result.

Reference: McGrath, Matt. "'First Ever' Fall in Global TB". BBC Health News. Web. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15263365. Oct 11 2011.
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