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Angola, Brazil and Mozambique among the 30 countries most affected by tuberculosis in 2021




Angola, Brazil, and Mozambique are on the list of 30 countries with more cases of tuberculosis in 2021, according to a report released today by the World Health Organization (WHO) on the disease.

The document, which analyzes the response to the disease in 215 countries or territories in 2021, highlights that Brazil was, among the 30 countries with the most cases, one of the five – Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Uganda, and Zambia – that recorded the highest levels of treatment coverage.

With regard to all the Portuguese-speaking countries and territories, and from the application that the WHO made available, with information per country, from the global tuberculosis database, it is possible to compare the announcement of new cases and deaths in 2015 and 2021.

Brazil is the Portuguese-speaking country or territory where the number of cases, 88,100, increased the most (+14%), as did the number of deaths (+11%).

The most significant decrease in cases in this group of countries or territories was registered in Cape Verde, with 185 cases (-45%), while in deaths, it declared 10% less.

The second largest decrease in cases was recorded in the Macau Special Administrative Region, with 340 cases (-18%) and 9.5% fewer deaths.

Angola comes next with an incidence of 64,000 cases (-11%) and a 15% drop in declared deaths.

In Mozambique, there was no change in the number of registered cases (98.5 thousand), and the deaths decreased by 49%.

Guinea-Bissau also reported no change in the number of registered cases (2.5 thousand), but deaths increased by 19%.

Sao Tome and Principe registered 82 cases (-27%), but the deaths increased by 6.1%, while in Equatorial Guinea, the reported cases were 1,900 (-0.4%), and the deaths decreased by 12%.

Timor-Leste had 3.3 thousand registered cases (-2.4%), and the number of deaths rose slightly (0.78%).

The report shows tuberculosis as the second deadliest infectious disease (after covid-19).

Caused by ‘Mycobacterium tuberculosis’ bacteria that most often affect the lungs, the disease can spread when people sick with tuberculosis excrete bacteria into the air – for example, by coughing.

Most people who develop the disease are adults, and in 2021, men accounted for 56.5%, adult women accounted for 32.5%, and children accounted for 11%.

Many new cases are attributable to five risk factors: malnutrition, HIV infection, alcohol use disorders, smoking, and diabetes.

Tuberculosis is preventable and curable. About 85% of people who develop tuberculosis can be successfully treated with a four to the six-month drug regimen.

Treatment has the added benefit of reducing transmission of the infection.

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