The nations of Africa have declared a continent wide State of Emergency for Tuberculosis as over 1,500 people die daily of the disease across the
lands. African health Minister issued the Emergency on Friday at a metting of The World Health Organization in Mozambique. Fatalities run at half a
million people a year and yet it can be cured with a six month course of anti biotics which cost around 20 dollars.
African health ministers have declared a tuberculosis emergency for the first time ever.
The increasing number of vulnerable people due to HIV and AIDS has pushed the number of TB related deaths to 1,500 a day across the continent.
African health ministers will declare tuberculosis an emergency at a meeting this week and call for greater access to life-prolonging drugs to fight
AIDS, Mozambican and WHO officials said on Tuesday.
Ministers and WHO executives are holding four days of talks in Mozambique on how to halt the spread of Africa's top killers - largely HIV and AIDS,
malaria and tuberculosis (TB).
The HIV pandemic has posed major challenges to TB control efforts globally. Tuberculosis is a leading cause of death among people who are HIV-positive
accounting for about 11 percent of AIDS deaths worldwide, the WHO's Internet Web site says.
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TB unfortunately s often found in AIDS patients because of their lack of resistence agains tthe Mycobacteria. Smokers are more suseptible to the
disease and although marijuana was a known cure for illness before anti biotics were discovered, smoking pipes shared have been a known spreader of
A normal healthy person usually shows resistence to the bacteria and it does not become a long term issue for them, except when the bacteria lies
dormant and attacks when the hosts immune system is lowered.
Over 48 hours of contact is usually required to contract the illness, it is not as easily spread from person to person as the flu is but samples taken
from patients sickrooms have been found to contain traces of the mycobacteria in the dust.
A simple skin test, though inconclusive can show if a person has contracted the ilness, called a mantoux test and further testing by chest Xray and
sputum stains and cultures. These are the standard testing proceedures and are unfortunately not accurate and can leave undecided results.
PCR testing is a modern form of DNA testing for the illness but is not often used because of the high cost. In previous tests positive samples were
found in 85 percent of samples previously tested and found negative by stain and culture methods.
This is one reason why the disease is spreading not just across Africa but Asia to and it has been found recently again in England after the
government had previously declared the country to be tuberculosis free.
Inadequate testing and poor conditions suffered by hepatitis c sufferers and AIDS patients within Africa are ensuring the high death rate continues.
The AIDS epidemic has now grown to massive proportions and the tuberculosis goes along with it.
Poverty conditions can once again spread the disease which goes back to what I previously mentioned about the positive dust samples for the disease.
African women often get tuberculosis of the skin by kneeling on floors coughed on by pulmonary tuberculosis sufferers.
Hopefully by declaring this emergency funding can now be received by the African nations and a worldwide effort at cleaning up the region should be
Bob Geldoffs African poverty concerts were a great start to wake the world up to Africas plight but there is so much more to be done.
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[edit on 27-8-2005 by Mayet]