Tuberculosis on the Rise in Central Africa: Health Minister
March 25, 2004
Yesterday, Health Minister Nestor Mamadou-Nali said TB has been rising steadily in the Central African Republic for the past 10 years, with the capital, Bangui, especially hard hit. He said cases had risen from 3,416 in 1996 to 4,706 in 2004, adding that some strains of the disease are resistant to medication, and many people with TB hide their condition due to stigma. "Studies conducted in cooperation with the Pasteur Institute in Bangui show that out of 449 cases of tuberculosis in Bangui, 56 percent were also HIV-positive, and 57.6 percent have gone missing," Mamadou-Nali said. Central Africa has a national TB program, but the minister said many patients stop treatment too soon because they feel better after a few weeks on medication.
Agence France Presse
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