Tuberculosis (TB), an infectious disease caused by bacteria, is a leading cause of death worldwide, despite being preventable and often curable. Approximately one-third of the world’s population carries the TB bacteria, about 9.6 million of whom develop “active” TB each year, which can be spread to others (“latent TB” disease cannot be spread). TB is found in every country in the world, though the majority of TB cases are concentrated in developing countries.
- In the United States, a total of 9,421 new TB cases (a rate of 2.96 cases per 100,000 persons) were reported in 2014
- In California, a total of 2,137 new TB cases (a rate of 5.5 cases) were reported in 2015, compared with 2,134 cases in 2014 (a rate of 5.5 cases). The decline in California’s incidence has slowed over the past decade and has now stopped
- In Santa Clara County, a total of 198 new TB cases (a rate of 10.3 cases) were reported in 2015, nearly double the state’s rate and triple the nation’s rate
Since the 1993 declaration of TB as a global health emergency by WHO, major global TB goals have most recently been set through:
- The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), adopted in 2000 by all member-states of the United Nations, and their successor, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted in 2015. The MDGs included a TB target under MDG 6: to halt and begin to reverse the incidence of TB by 2015. The world met this target as TB incidence fell worldwide, although progress varied within regions. Now, the SDGs aim to end the TB epidemic by 2030 under SDG Goal 3, which is to “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”
- The post-2015 global tuberculosis strategy (known as the End TB Strategy) endorsed by governments at the 2014 World Health Assembly, which set an overarching goal of ending the global TB epidemic as well as targets for achieving, by 2035, a 95% reduction in TB deaths and a 90% reduction in TB incidence (compared with 2015 levels)
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TB Fact Sheet 2015