We need people – people like those in TB Alert, who are focused and ambitious and care for people at grass roots in the UK, India and Africa. Dr Lucica Ditiu, Executive Secretary of the Stop TB Partnership
Anyone can be affected by TB, though certain factors do increase risk. These are common to low-incidence countries like the UK as well as high-incidence regions such as Africa and Asia.
Living where TB is common: You are more likely to be exposed to TB bacteria if you live in an area where TB is common. TB tends to cluster in urban areas – London has over 40% of the UK’s TB cases. Worldwide, just 22% of countries have over 80% of the world's TB cases.
Dark, unventilated or overcrowded accommodation: TB bacteria can spread more easily and remain suspended in the air for longer in poor housing conditions or working environments.
Immune system pressures: poor nutrition, poverty, poor housing and substance misuse can all weaken the immune system. Other illnesses can also make someone more vulnerable to TB. People living with HIV are at a particular risk from TB.
Find out more about the social and economic factors that can make people more vulnerable to TB, under Global TB challenges.