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Congress Should Appropriate Additional Funding For TB Prevention, Treatment In Efforts Against Drug Resistance

The Hill: McCain and Congress should lead fight against drug-resistant TB
Polly J. Price, professor of law at Emory University School of Law

“…Congress should appropriate additional funds to cover the costs of tuberculosis treatment that are now borne by local health departments. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also need more money to take on the responsibility of locating and monitoring tuberculosis patients who move from one jurisdiction to another, since many local health departments do not have the ability to do so. Drug-resistant tuberculosis may be the least of our public health challenges. Antibiotic drug resistance of all kinds struggles for national attention. At least for drug-resistant tuberculosis, we know that without adequate funding, the potential spread of tuberculosis at epidemic levels is all but certain. Sen. McCain is right that costs of treatment and prevention should be a federal obligation, but not simply as a one-off solution to an isolated case. This problem is too costly to ignore” (4/14).