Tuberculosis still threatens life in U.S.

Tuberculosis (TB) remains a life-threatening problem in the United States, even though the number of cases reported each year is decreasing, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The agency is among many using World TB Day, March 24, to raise awareness of problems, solutions and control efforts related to the infectious bacterial disease. “Misdiagnosis of TB still exists, and healthcare professionals often do not ‘think TB,’ ” the CDC says on its website, where it has posted general disease information and other resources related to World TB Day. It also offers a page about preventing, diagnosing and treating TB in healthcare settings.

A past issue of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report contains a brief section on employee safety as it relates to the prevention and control of TB in long-term care facilities serving the elderly, notes the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). OSHA also has information about nursing homes and personal care facilities on its website, including instructions (PDF) related to TB and other hazards in nursing and residential care facilities.

The World Health Organization also has posted information about TB on its website in conjunction with the observance.

Topics: Clinical