TB strain reaches record levels: UN | health and fitness | Hindustan Times
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TB strain reaches record levels: UN

health-and-fitness Updated: Mar 26, 2008 10:57 IST

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The multi-drug resistant form of tuberculosis is reaching its highest levels ever recorded overwhelming the ability of health-care systems around the world to treat sufferers, the United Nations envoy for efforts to fight the disease has said.

Jorge Sampaio, the Secretary-General's Special Envoy to Stop Tuberculosis, said the strain known as MDR-TB is becoming prevalent, with about 400,000 cases reported in 2006, the most recent year for which global figures are available.

Detailing the latest reports on efforts to fight TB, Sampaio said that only about 10 per cent of all MDR-TB sufferers are likely to be treated this year because of a lack of treatment and laboratory capacity worldwide.

Overall, TB is still killing around 4,500 people every day, with the epidemic fuelled by the fact that a sufferer is increasingly likely to be co-infected with HIV as well.