World TB Day - 24th March 2007
World TB Day is held on March 24th each year and provides an opportunity to raise awareness about the international health threat presented by tuberculosis (TB). It is a day to recognise the collaborative efforts of all countries involved in fighting TB. TB can be cured, controlled, and with diligent efforts and sufficient resources, eventually eliminated.
The theme for World TB Day 2007-“TB Anywhere is TB Everywhere” reinforces the message that through unified action on all levels we can work towards a world free of tuberculosis. It calls for collaboration and shared responsibility to achieve this. TB is a disease without borders and must be tackled through co-ordinated international action including financial investment in TB control, surveillance, and research and development.
World TB Day 2007 also aims to emphasise the importance of the need for decision-makers to protect communities from the threat of extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) and HIV-related TB.
By mobilising communities, raising awareness, encouraging governments and donors to invest in TB control and calling for strengthened commitment, countries can ensure that TB is placed prominently on the global agenda and is eliminated by 2050 through a unified global campaign.
TB - The Facts
TB remains a leading cause of death worldwide with up to 9 million cases and 1.6 million deaths reported per year. It is a disease closely related to poverty and more than 80% of the infected cases live in developing countries.
In 2004, (the latest validated figures) there were 432 cases of TB reported in Ireland, a notification rate of 10.2 cases per 100,000 population. In 2005, there were 461 cases provisionally reported to HPSC, a notification rate of 10.8/100,000. The rate in the indigenous population was 8.8 per 100,000 in 2005 while the rate in foreign-born persons was 38.0 per 100,000. The number of TB cases reported in Ireland has declined in the last decade with 612 cases reported in 1991, a rate of 18.2 per 100,000. The decline has been even more considerable since the early 1950s when 7,000 cases of TB were notified annually.
However, we must remain vigilant concerning TB treatment and control as “TB Anywhere is TB Everywhere” reminds all countries of their collective responsibility to combat this curable disease. Global TB control is required to achieve TB elimination in all countries including those with a low incidence of disease.
More information on TB is available at:
The Global Plan to Stop TB 2006-2015
Stop TB Partnership World TB Day 2007
CDC website for World TB Day, 2007
WHO Factsheet on TB