San Diego TB Rate Is Twice the National Average

San Diego cases of tuberculosis are double the national average health officials say, raising again the question of the role of illegal immigration in the spread of very serious like tuberculosis (TB) in the United States.

The problem has sparked an agreement between San Diego and Imperial Counties, the state of Baja California and multiple nonprofit organizations Times of San Diego reported. The nonprofit organizations are International Community Foundation and Puentes de Esperanza Contra Tuberculosis, A.C.

A portion of the San Diego Health and Human Services Agency website is specifically dedicated to “Tuberculosis Control and Refugee Health Program.” A tuberculosis fact sheet found there reads, “Nationally, the number of TB cases in the United States has been declining for nearly two decades,” but continues, “The proportion of cases among individuals born outside the United States increased from 42% of the national total in 1998 (7,599 cases) to 66% of the national total (6,181 cases) in 2014 (provisional US data).”

Symptoms of TB may include: feeling weak or sick, weight loss, fever, sweats, cough, chest pain, coughing up blood. Additional symptoms are possible according to SDHHS.

Additionally the SDHHS states, “TB cases born outside of the United States comprised 70% of San Diego County’s cases. Of the 154 cases born outside the United States, 70 (45%) were from Asia (including 38 from the Philippines, and 13 from Vietnam), 66 (43%) were from Mexico, and 7 (5%) were from Africa.”

Europe has been seeing a resurgence of TB after seeing long-dwindling numbers of cases. Dr. Masoud Dara of the World Health Organization confirmed to Breitbart London that some European countries are seeing up to 80 percent of their TB cases occurring among migrant populations. Dara noted Sub-Saharan African countries and those migrating from the Soviet Union as particularly concerning for levels of TB.

Tuberculosis is a serious daily concern of Border Patrol agents who repeatedly come into direct contact with foreign nationals crossing into the United States. It is an issue that continues to be brought up with the multi-year surge in foreign nationals crossing into the United States illegally. The southwest border has seen exponential increases for years bringing the issue to media headlines and greater public awareness last summer.

Brandon Darby of Breitbart Texas reported in early June that as we enter summer 2015 we are already seeing another surge, “In the past few weeks, the numbers of unaccompanied minors and incomplete family units have begun soaring again, according to the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), the organization that represents nearly 17,000 U.S. Border Patrol agents.” Almost exactly one-year prior, Breitbart Texas released over 40 leaked images of detained women and children packed into U.S. Border Patrol facilities.

Measles is also noted as a disease that typically comes into the U.S. from foreign countries. Considered eliminated from the U.S. in 2000 according to public health officials, a measles outbreak did occur at Disneyland in Anaheim, California last December.

Though the disease spread among seven states even popping up in small numbers in Mexico and Canada, patient zero was never discovered health officials reported. However, the Centers for Disease Control attributed many cases of measles in 2014 outbreaks to an origin in the Philippines and have noted that typically cases of the measles originate in other countries and spread after an infected person returns to the U.S. Patients can be asymptomatic for days, even weeks before signs of the disease are noticeable and are typically contagious four days before a rash shows.

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana


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