India continues to have the highest number of TB cases in the world
Globally, there were 10.4 million tuberculosis (TB) cases in 2016. Southeast Asia, alone, accounted for nearly half of the world’s TB burden, reporting an estimated 4.74 million cases and deathS of about 784,000 people.
According to the World Health Organization’s global TB report titled ‘Bending the curve: ending TB’, the disease is the “single largest killer in the 15 to 49 year age group”, striking people in their most productive years.
“Since 1990, TB has remained the topmost reason for work days lost. Fighting TB is like fighting poverty. Evidence suggests that for every dollar invested in TB the return is US$43. It makes great economic sense to end this malady,” says Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director of WHO Southeast Asia.
India continues to have the highest number of TB cases in the world, revealed the TB report released on October 30. India, along with six other countries—Indonesia, China, The Philippines, Pakistan, Nigeria and South Africa—accounted for 64 per cent of the total burden.
While 45 per cent of new TB cases occurred in Asia, 25 per cent of new cases were reported in Africa.
In 2016, out of an estimated 2.8 million TB patients in India, 423,000 patients were estimated to have died. Moreover, out of 2.8 million patients, only 1,938,158 cases were notified in the public and private sector in India, leading to 850,000 cases missing the treatment options.