Sunday, 10 February 2019

Deadly drug-resistant TB a 'blinking red' global threat

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Deadly, drug-resistant tuberculosis -- as lethal as Ebola and tough to treat in even the best hospitals -- is a "blinking red" worldwide threat, the head of a global health fund warned in an interview with AFP.

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is on a mission to eradicate the three epidemics and plans to spend around $12 billion on it over the next three years.

"We should all be more worried about multi-drug-resistant TB than we are. It gets nothing like the level of attention it should," Peter Sands, Global Fund's head, told AFP during a visit to New Delhi.

Tuberculosis has become resistant to anti-microbials in an estimated 600,000 cases worldwide.

The disease "does not obey borders or need visas, nor pay attention to how wealthy you are. At the moment, about 25 percent of those 600,000 cases are being diagnosed and treated", said Sands, who became head of the organisation last year.

"If you look across the threats to global health security, this is one where the light should be blinking red."

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[LEGAL immigrants to the US are screened for TB. Illegals, of course, are not. --Editor]




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