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Greater Political Commitment Needed To Push Down Global TB Numbers, WHO Annual Report Says

CIDRAP News: Despite progress, WHO paints ‘grim’ picture of global TB
“…While the [WHO’s Global Tuberculosis Report 2017] shows progress against TB has been made, including a 37 percent reduction in the TB mortality rate since 2000, it also shows that reducing the global burden of the disease will take time. Overall, there were an estimated 10.4 million new cases of TB in 2016, and 1.7 million deaths, including 400,000 people who were co-infected with HIV…” (Dall, 10/30).

CNBC: Pandemic alert: Tuberculosis is world’s No. 1 infectious killer
“…In 2016, 10.4 million people fell sick with TB, and about 1.7 million people — including 400,000 with concomitant HIV — succumbed to the deadly infection. According to WHO, TB is the ninth-leading cause of death worldwide and continues to be the world’s No. 1 infectious killer, surpassing HIV/AIDS…” (Littler/Booth, 10/30).

Healio: WHO: Ending TB will take greater political commitment
“…Experts hope two upcoming meetings will intensify the spotlight on TB. Next month, the disease will be the focus of a WHO conference in Moscow that [Mario Raviglione, director of WHO’s global TB program,] said will be attended by representatives from 100 countries. That will be followed by a U.N. General Assembly high-level meeting in 2018 that will seek a greater commitment from heads of state on TB…” (10/30).

HuffPost: A Lot Of People Think This Disease Is Extinct, But It’s A Top 10 Killer Globally
“…Dr. Lucica Ditiu, executive director of the international Stop TB Partnership, told HuffPost that the numbers were ‘nowhere close to what we should see if we want to go forward.’ Ditiu said millions more people will continue to die year after year without more progress toward eliminating the disease…” (Weber, 10/30).

Science Speaks: WHO 2017 TB Report: Progress, funding, health coverage all fall short of need to confront impacts of disease
“…More than 600,000 people [worldwide] became sick with tuberculosis resistant to the most effective first-line drug [in 2016], and 490,000 of them had TB resistant to additional medicines as well. … Of the 10.4 million estimated new cases of tuberculosis in 2016, just 6.3 million were reported…” (Barton, 10/30).

U.N. News Centre: Tuberculosis world’s top infectious killer; U.N. health agency calls for political action to stop spread
“…Closing care and financing gaps, as well as progress in a particular subset of high TB burden countries are essential to tackling the epidemic, according to the study. Underreporting and underdiagnoses also continue to be a challenge, especially in countries with large unregulated private sectors and weak health systems…” (10/30).

Xinhua News: WHO sees insufficient global progress in eliminating tuberculosis
“…WHO’s End TB Strategy and U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) dictate that by 2030 TB deaths are supposed to be down by 90 percent and TB incidence (new cases per year) down by 80 percent, compared with 2015. Despite the fact that global TB mortality rate and TB incidence are now falling at about three percent and two percent per year respectively, these figures need to improve to four-to-five percent and 10 percent per year respectively by 2020 so as to reach the first milestones of the End TB Strategy…” (10/30).

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