It is estimated that a third of the global population is infected with latent TB — and one in ten of these people will go on to develop the disease. Annually, 8.6 million people develop TB, leading to 1.3 million deaths — deaths that are avoidable through early diagnosis and treatment.
Of the 8.6 million people who fell ill with TB in 2012, around three million didn’t get the care they needed.
80% of tuberculosis cases are concentrated in 22 ‘high-burden’ countries. See: World Health Organization map of TB incidence by country, 2012
TB and drug-resistance
Improper treatment, intermittent drug shortages and poor monitoring of TB patients under treatment have increased the threat of drug-resistant forms of TB.
An estimated 450,000 people developed multi drug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) in 2012, although fewer than one in four of these were diagnosed. There were an estimated 170,000 deaths from MDR-TB that year.
At least one case of extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) had been reported by 92 countries by the end of 2012. An estimated 9.6% of MDR-TB cases have XDR-TB.
TB among people living with HIV (PLHIV)
WHO has estimated that 1.3 million lives have been saved by increased collaboration to tackle TB and HIV as a dual-epidemic. In 2012 there were 320,000 deaths from TB among people who were HIV-positive. However there is some way still to go to meet the target of halving TB-related deaths among people living with HIV (PLHIV) by 2015. See: World Health Organization map of estimated HIV prevalence in new TB cases, 2012
TB Alert, in union with the 1,200 organisations that form the Stop TB Partnership, is committed to achieving the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target and The Global Plan to Stop TB 2011-2015 targets to:
- halt and begin to reverse the incidence of TB (and other major diseases) by 2015
- reduce prevalence and death rates by 50% by 2015, compared with their 1990 levels
- eliminate TB as a global public health problem by 2050.
The detailed steps required to meet these targets are set out in the Global Plan to Stop TB 2011-15, including targets for:
- more cases of TB to be diagnosed early and treated successfully through the DOTS strategy
- new diagnostics, drugs and vaccines
- improved and accessible laboratory services for testing and identifying multi drug-resistant (MDR-TB) and TB-HIV co-infection.
Progress to date
- The rate of new TB cases has been falling worldwide for about a decade, meeting the MDG target to reverse the incidence of TB by 2015. While incidence rates are also falling, the rate of decline remains slow at just 2% per year
- Between 1995 and 2012, 56 million people were successfully treated for TB, saving 22 million lives
- All 22 High Burden Countries (HBCs) have implemented the DOTS strategy, the key element to stopping the transmission of TB
- Among these 22 HBCs, 11 are not on track to reduce incidence, mortality and prevalence targets.