Massive funding boost needed to beat TB, UN says (Update)
The global fight against tuberculosis needs a massive financial boost as drug-resistant strains of the disease take hold, two international organisations warned on Monday.
The World Health Organisation and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria said that an extra $1.6 billion a year was needed to bolster the battle by lifting the overall total to $4.8 billion.
"We are treading water at a time when we desperately need to scale up our response," said WHO director-general Margaret Chan.
Global Fund head Mark Dybul also said a funding hike was essential to help identify all new cases of tuberculosis, while simultaneously making progress against existing cases.
"It is critical that we raise the funding that is urgently needed to control this disease," said Dybul.
"If we don't act now, our costs could skyrocket. It is invest now or pay forever," he added.
Tuberculosis (TB) claims 1.4 million lives every year, making it a top global killer after AIDS.
It is estimated to infect around 8.7 million people worldwide annually, though only 60 percent of cases are detected.
Africa is hardest-hit, with TB usually going hand in hand with AIDS, but Eastern Europe is also a major concern.
Around one-third of the world's population is believed to be infected with the tuberculosis pathogen, though that does not mean they will get sick or are infectious.
"The huge majority will never have any problem," Oliver Moldenhauer of aid group Doctors Without Borders told AFP.
The risk of falling ill and passing on the disease rises substantially if an individual is already ill, is poor, uses drugs, or lives in a TB hotbed.
The fact that TB mostly hits marginalised population groups means it has an "image problem" which keeps it out of the spotlight, said Moldenhauer.
Dybul pointed to weak "political commitment" to fight it among governments, notably in the former Soviet bloc.
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis—known in medical jargon as MDR-TB—is thought to account for almost four percent of new TB cases and an estimated 630,000 people are believed to have it.
"Drug-resistant TB is notoriously difficult to diagnose and extremely difficult and costly to treat," said Chan, adding that the world was sitting on a "powder keg".
MDR-TB is blamed on poor quality treatment of the conventional strain—for example, when patients halt their medication too soon.
After emerging in a handful of nations, it has spread to around 80, though 60 percent of cases are in Brazil, China, Russia and South Africa.
The WHO agency declared TB a global health emergency in 1993.
"On many levels, TB control is a success story," Chan said, pointing to major treatment campaigns which slashed mortality rates by 41 percent.
"The epidemic which in 1993 looked set to spiral out of control peaked 10 years on and began a slow but steady decline. But despite successes in shrinking the epidemic, the global scale remains enormous," she said.
(c) 2013 AFP
- WHO urges stepped up battle against drug-resistant TB Mar 23, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- Tuberculosis cases decline worldwide: WHO Oct 11, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- China faces 'serious' epidemic of drug-resistant TB (Update) Jun 06, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- WHO: Money, drugs needed to rein in new TB strains Mar 23, 2009 | not rated yet | 0
- Drug-resistant tuberculosis rife in China Dec 11, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras
Apr 15, 2011 I'd like to open a discussion thread for version 2 of the draft of my book ''Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras'', available online at http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/0810.1019 , and for the...
- More from Physics Forums - Independent Research
More news stories
(AP)—Government health officials are investigating several health problems reported with potentially contaminated medications made by a Tennessee specialty pharmacy.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 7 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—Comorbid conditions often accompany alopecia areata, according to a study published online May 22 in JAMA Dermatology.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 8 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—As a world-class golfer, Stacy Lewis' accomplishments are remarkable. But it was a physical challenge in her childhood that defined her ascent to the top of her sport.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 8 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Saudi Arabia said Friday it would send samples taken from animals possibly infected with a deadly SARS-like virus to the United States for testing in a bid to find the source of disease.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 12 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
The World Health Organization voiced deep concern Thursday over the SARS-like virus that has killed 22 people in less than a year, saying it might potentially spread more widely between humans.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 15 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
(Medical Xpress)—A new study by researchers in the US has shown that an ancient virus can be modified to help in the fight against the simian immunodeficiency virus SIV, which is the equivalent in monkeys ...
12 hours ago | 5 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Two mutations central to the development of infantile myofibromatosis (IM)—a disorder characterized by multiple tumors involving the skin, bone, and soft tissue—may provide new therapeutic targets, according to researchers ...
7 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |
Women at a particular stage in their monthly menstrual cycle may be more vulnerable to some of the psychological side-effects associated with stressful experiences, according to a study from UCL.
9 hours ago | 5 / 5 (2) | 0 |
Biological processes are generally based on events at the molecular and cellular level. To understand what happens in the course of infections, diseases or normal bodily functions, scientists would need to ...
10 hours ago | 5 / 5 (2) | 0 |
Talking on a hands-free device while behind the wheel can lead to a sharp increase in errors that could imperil other drivers on the road, according to new research from the University of Alberta.
6 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Kate O'Reilly's spring allergy survival kit includes the usual stuff - nasal sprays, allergy pills and a box of tissues. This season, she's added a new weapon to her line of defense: an app on her smartphone.
7 hours ago | not rated yet | 0