WHO renews urgent call for global investment in TB (tuberculosis):
This article was originally published in Clinica
The World Health Organization (WHO) has renewed calls for a global concerted effort to tackle tuberculosis, after a study revealed a huge rise in multidrug-resistance (MDR-TB), highlighting the need to tighten monitoring of the disease. Eastern Europe and central Asia have emerged as hotspots of the problem, associated with high HIV rates (some 1.5 million people, compared with some 30,000 in 1995). The Commonwealth of Independent States is worst affected, with MDR-TB rates of up to 14%. Mapping of the situation in six of China's 23 provinces revealed rates of around 10% in at least two. The WHO estimates that there are around 300,000 new cases of MDR-TB a year. Investment in global TB prevention - which includes diagnostic and therapy-monitoring testing - is the only way of reducing TB incidence and containing it geographically, says the WHO.