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Pacific Island Region On Track To Meet TB MDG, Drug-Resistance Remains A Threat

Experts at the Fifth Pacific Stop Tuberculosis Meeting in Nadi, Fiji, concluded that the Pacific Islands region is on track to meet the Millennium Development Goal of halving TB prevalence by 2015, All Headline News reports in an article about the meeting, which recently concluded.

Regional specialists noted that “the emergence of drug-resistant strains and concentrations of the disease in some areas makes it a continuing threat and a high priority for countries and territories,” according to the news service (Tudrau-Tamani, 5/11). A press release from the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) states that there are about 18,000 reported cases of TB in the region each year. The area’s 190 cases per 100,000 people is “2.5 times higher than that of the wider WHO Western Pacific region,” which records 76 cases per 100,000 people (5/12).

The meeting “brought together 85 participants from national TB programs in 19 Pacific Island countries and territories,” All Headline News writes. Technical experts from the SPC, the WHO, CDC, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria participated in the meeting (5/11).