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TB Treatment For Children, MDR-TB Pose Challenges To Stopping Epidemic

International Business Times: World Tuberculosis Day: Why are rates of drug-resistant TB so high in Russia?
“…Tuberculosis is the leading infectious killer in Russia. The problem in the region, one of the ‘high priority countries’ highlighted in a recent World Health Organization report, is being fueled by multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). While the number of overall tuberculosis cases has slowly declined over the last decade, rates of drug-resistant strains remain very high — and continue to climb. It is expensive and difficult to treat, and deadly…” (Smith, 3/23).

Reuters: Drug-resistant TB threatens to kill 75 million people by 2050, cost $16.7 trillion
“Over the next 35 years, multidrug-resistant tuberculosis will kill 75 million people and could cost the global economy a cumulative $16.7 trillion (£15 trillion) — the equivalent of the European Union’s annual output, a U.K. parliamentary group said on Tuesday. If left untackled, the spread of drug-resistant TB superbugs threatens to shrink the world economy by 0.63 percent annually, the U.K. All Party Parliamentary Group on Global Tuberculosis (APPG TB) said, urging governments to do more to improve research and cooperation…” (Zweynert, 3/24).

Reuters: Children with TB at risk of dying amid slow progress on child-friendly treatment
“More than half a million children who fall ill with tuberculosis each year are at risk of dying because of a lack of child-friendly treatments, experts said. Tuberculosis, which kills more than one person every 20 seconds, is much harder to detect in children than in adults because they do not always show the typical symptoms, such as coughing, night sweats, and blood in the phlegm or spit…” (Zweynert, 3/23).

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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.