Added by Nigel Shelbourne on November 6, 2010
With 9040 tuberculosis (TB) cases in Britain in 2009, instances of drug-resistant TB has doubled over the last 10 years and is at the highest level over the past thirty years.
Yet, the overall proportion of drug resistant instances is just 1.2%. Drug-resistant tuberculosis cases require prolonged treatment that may stretch to more than a year and a half.
Non-drug-resistant tuberculosis cases require half year course of numerous antibiotic medications.
The TB surveillance head at the Health Protection Agency stated that tuberculosis was treatable but could be life threatening if not taken care of in time.
It is an infectious disease. Immigrant population and other vulnerable communities like drug users and homeless individuals were at high risk.
According to the executive director at HPA, Dr. Paul Cosford, statistics indicate that tuberculosis is prevalent and requires immediate action.
Nearly a third of the global population is infected with the bacterium but only a small percentage suffers from the actual disease.
It has been noted that substance abuse and lack of access to medical facilities increases risk of this problem. Prevalence of AIDS has lead to a spurt in TB cases numbers because of lowering of immune system leading to frequent instances of tuberculosis.