New CDC data show that tuberculosis (TB) cases are declining in the U.S., but at a rate too slow to achieve TB elimination during this century. As we approach World TB Day, these data underscore the need for a dual approach to tackle this deadly disease.
- In 2017, 9,093 new cases of TB were reported in the U.S, a 1.8 percent drop from the prior year
- The current TB rate (2.8 cases per 100,000 persons) remains 28x higher than the TB elimination goal of 1 case per 1 million persons
- More than 80 percent of U.S. TB cases are now associated with reactivation of longstanding, untreated latent TB infections (LTBI), which can progress into infectious TB disease if untreated
Eliminating TB will require a dual approach:
- Strengthen existing TB programs/systems to diagnose and treat active TB disease
- Intensify efforts to identify and treat LTBI among those who are infected with TB bacteria but are not yet sick