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Immediate Action Needed To Curb Spread Of TB, Especially Among Children

In this entry in the Huffington Post’s “Impact” blog, Kolleen Bouchane, director of ACTION, an international partnership of advocates working to mobilize resources to treat and prevent the spread of tuberculosis (TB), examines the need for improved TB vaccines and diagnostics in order to curb the spread of multidrug-resistant TB, especially among children, and highlights ACTION’s new report (.pdf), “Children and Tuberculosis: Exposing a Hidden Epidemic,” which she says “exposes the link between TB and orphaned and vulnerable children, malnourished children or children living with HIV.”

“TB remains a global public health threat that kills nearly two million people every year,” she writes, adding, “The WHO estimates nine million people become sick with TB each year. Worse, 10-15 percent are children under 15.” Bouchane concludes, “ACTION partners around the world urge immediate and decisive action from world leaders to stop ignoring tuberculosis as a pandemic and instead work to increase funding for TB research and treatment to save all lives — including the most neglected children and continue to fully fund the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria” (9/23).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.