The World Health Organisation's Global Tuberculosis Report 2016, published today, shows that TB - already the world’s deadliest infectious disease - just got deadlier, with more cases, more deaths and more drug-resistance.
According to the report, there were an estimated 10.4 million new TB cases worldwide and 1.8 million deaths in 2015. This is a 20% revision upwards from last year’s figures.
The report also highlighted that drug-resistant TB continues to represent a global threat. Almost 580,000 people were estimated to have drug-resistant TB in 2015, up from less than half a million in 2014.
Earlier this year, the Review on Antimicrobial Resistance called for TB to be the cornerstone of the global AMR response. The Review estimated that TB has the potential to cause a quarter of all deaths from drug resistant infections by 2050, with one person dying from the disease every 12 seconds and a cost to the global economy of more than $16.7 trillion over the next 35 years.
The WHO's report serves as a reminder of why international action on TB is so urgently needed.
The full report is available here: http://www.who.int/tb/publications/global_report/en/