Readers respond: Tuberculosis surging after COVID-19 – OregonLive

COVID-19 consumed the focus and resources of infectious disease specialists, research scientists, and health care as a whole. Thanks to this huge effort, the devastating impact of COVID-19 has been minimized. Unfortunately, another infectious disease has risen in its place: tuberculosis.
During the time that COVID-19 was requiring significant resources, millions of people worldwide were not able to get the treatment they needed for tuberculosis. As a result, 1.6 million people died of the disease worldwide in 2021. It was the first time in many years that there was an increase in TB deaths.
Most TB cases are curable. However, the majority of those infected are in resource-poor areas where proper treatment is not available or hard to access. That is why action must be taken now and the End TB Now Act is necessary. This legislation sets bold targets to reach and treat the most vulnerable populations affected by TB. It catalyzes support for the research and development of new tools to prevent, diagnose, and treat TB, including drug-resistant strains, worldwide. Contact your local congresspersons and stress the urgency of supporting the act.
Takoda Wheeler, Corvallis
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