World TB Day
Now’s the time to speed up global efforts to end TB altogether.
In 2015, tuberculosis ranked above HIV/AIDS as one of the top 10 causes of death worldwide.1 The situation is so dire that reaching, treating and curing everyone who needs help is not just healthcare problem: it is a humanitarian one.
Success depends on our governments, affected communities, civil society, and international partners working with healthcare providers. Because the simple fact is, with a timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment, most people who fall ill with TB disease could be cured.1
Planning for a world free of TB with zero deaths, disease and suffering.
Thanks to organized healthcare and antibiotics, many people mistakenly think of TB as an antiquated disease. And yet, roughly one third of the world’s population — an astounding two billion people — are currently infected with TB.2
That’s why the World Health Assembly recently established ambitious goals in its End TB Strategy. Among them, a 90% reduction in TB deaths and an 80% reduction in TB incidence by 2030, compared with 2015.
This is no small task. The epidemic is most prevalent in low- and middle-income countries, where socio-economic factors like homelessness, lack of healthcare access, migration, unawareness, imprisonment, remote locations and myriad other factors make it difficult to identify people with TB — and get them the care they need.
The care itself is a second hurdle. TB treatment involves taking a strict regimen of several drugs for up to a year. Stopping too soon can lead to relapse and potentially allow for antibiotic resistance to form. To compound the problem, some strains of TB bacteria have stopped responding to medications regularly used to treat TB disease.3
With bold policies, supportive systems, unprecedented collaboration, and research, there’s every expectation we can end the TB epidemic in our lifetime.
How to create a world free of TB for good.
Despite enormous progress in recent years, there is still much to be done. In 2015, 1.8 million people died from TB including 400,000 co-infected with HIV.4
To end the epidemic in our lifetime, targets set in the End TB Strategy include a 90% reduction in TB deaths and an 80% reduction in TB incidence by 2030, compared with 2015.4 Here’s how to reach these goals.
TB is the leading killer of people living with HIV.
In 2015, 400,000 the deadly combination HIV + TB.
TB often has a long latency period, where the time between infection and active TB development can take years or even decades. But because HIV weakens the immune system, it accelerates the typical timeline to a matter of weeks.5 In fact, people infected with both HIV and TB are over 30 times more likely to develop active TB.6
To make matters worse, TB is notoriously hard to diagnose in HIV patients with low CD4 cell counts. Paradoxically, these patients have the greatest need for rapid and accurate diagnosis, permitting fast initiation of TB treatment.
For your most vulnerable and hard-to-diagnose patients.
The Alere Determine™ TB LAM Ag test empowers you to screen for active TB in HIV positive patients. Test right at the point-of-care and get lab-quality results in minutes.
This novel rapid test detects the LAM antigen (lipoarabinomannan) in urine samples, assisting you in your TB screening to rule-in sooner than traditional methods and enabling earlier treatment for your patient.