Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment observes World Tuberculosis Day


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GREELEY, CO – NOVEMBER 18:The Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment, located at 1555 North 17th Ave., is seen as the sun sets in Greeley Nov. 18, 2021. (Alex McIntyre/Staff Photographer)

World Tuberculosis Day is Sunday, and the Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment has reaffirmed its commitment to protect Weld residents through evaluation, diagnosis and treatment services for individuals with active TB.

The Weld health department said in a news release TB rates are increasing in Colorado with nearly 60% more cases in 2023 from 2022. The department also said the average number of active TB cases in Weld were about three per year before the COVID-19 pandemic. There were seven active cases in the county in 2023.

“While the numbers of cases are low overall, the increase in active cases have made TB a priority for the Health Department,” director Jason Chessher said in a news release. “By diagnosing, monitoring and treating people with TB infection, we can prevent them from getting sick and spreading TB to others.”

World TB Day serves as a poignant reminder of the global fight against tuberculosis and the urgent need for collective action to eradicate this preventable and curable disease.

The World Health Organization said 1.3 million people worldwide died from TB in 2022. The disease is the second-leading infectious kills after COVID-19, also according to the WHO.

For more information about the Weld County TB Program and its initiatives, go online to weld.gov/Government/Departments/Health-and-Environment/Public-Health-Services/Tuberculosis-Program.

County public health nurses last year provided more than 300 home visits for direct observed therapy to patients in isolation with active TB. The purpose of the visits were to see medications were being taken correctly and were working.

The county release said the health department also works with health care providers, community organizations and hospital systems on appropriate testing, and prompt referrals are made to the county if symptoms are suspected.

 

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