Kent County Health Department Recognizes World Tuberculosis Day
The Kent County Health Department recognizes March 24, 2007 as World Tuberculosis Day.
The goal of World TB Day is to raise awareness of the international health threat presented by Tuberculosis.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Tuberculosis (TB) is the second leading cause of death due to infectious disease with two million deaths worldwide. Currently, there are 8.4 million new active cases of infectious TB worldwide.
The rate of active TB in Kent County is relatively low with approximately 3.7 cases per 100,000 residents. In 2006, the Kent County Health Department investigated 22 newly-reported cases of active TB disease and provided TB assessments to approximately 1,000 people who were found to be infected with TB but did not have active disease. The Health Department also provides more than 4,500 TB skin tests in its Immunization Clinic annually.
Tuberculosis is a communicable disease that is spread from person to person through the air by respiratory droplets. TB is divided into two case types active TB and latent TB. Active TB indicates that an individual is actively infected and presents with symptoms while those with latent TB have the bacteria but do not have symptoms. Symptoms of TB include: a cough lasting longer than two weeks, pain in the chest, coughing up blood, weight loss, fever and night sweats.