Unite to End TB

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TB Treatment Centre Lima Peru

24.03.2016 – 1.5 million people die from Tuberculosis a year. A statistic made worse by the fact that Tuberculosis is preventable and treatable.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), in 2014, 9.6 million people fell ill with TB and 1.5 million died from the disease. Over 95% of TB deaths occur in low and middle income countries and it is among the top ten causes of death among children under five. In 2014, an estimated one million children became ill with TB of whom 140,000 died.

Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It generally affects the lungs, but can also affect other parts of the body. About one in three people are infected with TB, but do not have symptoms, and are not infectious to others. This is known as latent TB. About 10% of latent infections eventually progress to the active disease which can kill if left untreated. Tuberculosis is spread through the air when people who have active TB in their lungs cough, spit, speak, or sneeze. People with latent TB do not spread the disease.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement that “Ending the TB epidemic by 2030 is one of the targets of the new Sustainable Development Goals. TB disproportionately affects the poorest and most vulnerable, the socially marginalized and those lacking access to basic services/health services. Therefore, progress in ending TB must go hand-in-hand with other SDG efforts to reduce inequalities, eliminate extreme poverty, ensure social protection, achieve universal health coverage and end HIV/AIDS.”

Drug-resistant TB is a growing global health concern, and on this World Tuberculosis day, we need to raise awareness of this disease and join forces to fight it. #UniteToEndTB on social media.


UNRICs Related Links



· Sustainable Development Goals

Photo: Pan American Health Organization