Factors which make people more vulnerable to this bacterium are those associated with poverty and civil disorder – malnutrition, crowded sub-standard housing, diabetes, tobacco use and HIV infection.
Of the estimated 9 million people who developed TB in 2013, more than half (56%) were in the South-East Asia and Western Pacific Regions. A further one quarter were in the African Region, which also had the highest rates of cases and deaths relative to population. India and China alone accounted for 24% and 11% of total cases, respectively. Who Global Tuberculosis Report
It is not all bad news. Even if the numbers of ill seems staggering, the increase in infections is slowing. Wealthy countries like Canada must remain vigilant to the risks. The homeless and aboriginal communities disproportionately bear this burden.
Many animals may serve as reservoirs for the disease. Cattle, goats, sheep, deer and small wild animals like rodents and reptiles may harbour the disease. In Canada a programme in the 1950s which included the ruthless culling of cattle infected has eliminated the problem in our dairy herds.
Government of Canada Healthy Canadians
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