Lax Immigration Monitoring Brings Virulent TB to Canada
Fewer than half of almost 1,800 Toronto students deemed at high risk of having tuberculosis were willing to be screened for the disease, a study shows. And of the 162 found to be infected with tuberculosis, only 62 were treated with an antibiotic to kill the bacteria, report University of Toronto researchers in this month’s issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
“It’s disturbing,” says Dr. Lillian Yuan, professor of preventative medicine and biostatistics at the university. “Students (infected with tuberculosis) aren’t necessarily put on medication. A lot of those found to be positive were not given treatment.” … A person is deemed at risk, and should be tested if they’ve lived in an area where tuberculosis is widespread.
Many high-risk people are immigrants and they’re often reluctant to have their children screened, said [Dr. Howard] Njoo. “They’re afraid people might deport them or something, which is certainly not the case.” (Toronto Star, October 1, 1995)
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