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Improved Data Collection Shows More TB Cases Worldwide, But Progress Made In Curbing Disease, WHO Report Says

Media sources report on the WHO’s annual tuberculosis report, which shows progress against TB but says more effort must be put into tracking and treating those who are infected.

Agence France-Presse: Big strides made in fighting TB, says WHO
“The known tally of people with tuberculosis rose last year but overall ‘major progress’ is being made in rolling back the disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Wednesday…” (Ingham, 10/22).

BBC News: WHO revises global tuberculosis estimate up by 500,000
“…In 2013 nine million people had developed TB around the world, up from 8.6 million in 2012, the WHO said. However, the number of people dying from TB continued to decline, it added…” (10/22).

CNN: 1.5 million died last year from this curable disease
“…On Wednesday, the World Health Organization released its 2014 Global Tuberculosis Report, which shows that nine million people developed tuberculosis in 2013 and 1.5 million died, making it one of the world’s deadliest communicable diseases…” (Wilson, 10/22).

Deutsche Welle: WHO: TB one of world’s deadliest infectious diseases
“…Though the overall mortality rate has declined by 45 percent since 1990, the number of deaths — especially of people infected with the hard-to-treat strains resistant to multiple drugs or extensively drug-resistant strains — is still too high, according to WHO…” (10/22).

The Guardian: Drug-resistant tuberculosis poses global threat, warn doctors
“Strains of tuberculosis that are resistant to most of the drugs used to treat them are spreading rapidly across the former Soviet Union and pose a serious global threat, warn doctors…” (Boseley, 10/22).

NPR: Bad And Good News About The Second Deadliest Infectious Disease
“…The report says an ‘unacceptably high’ number of lives are being lost to this curable disease. The death toll represents ‘roughly one sixth of all cases last year,’ says Dr. Mario Raviglione, director of WHO’s global TB program…” (Conant, 10/22).

Reuters: Drug-resistant tuberculosis at crisis levels, warns WHO
“…Furthermore, extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), which is even more expensive and difficult to treat than multi drug-resistant (MDR-TB) strains, has now been reported in 100 countries around the world…” (Kelland, 10/22).

ScienceInsider: Tuberculosis toll greater than previously estimated, says WHO
“…The higher numbers reflect better data gathering around the world, rather than an actual surge in the disease, the report notes…” (Cornwall, 10/22).

U.N. News Centre: Despite gains against tuberculosis, better research funding required — U.N. report
“…An estimated $8 billion is needed each year for a full response, but there is currently an annual shortfall of $2 billion…” (10/22).

WHO: Improved data reveals higher global burden of tuberculosis
“…A special supplement to this year’s WHO report marks 20 years of anti-TB drug-resistance surveillance. It outlines the MDR-TB response to-date and the priority actions that must now be taken from prevention to cure…” (10/22).

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