Gov’t controlling TB rate

Secretary for Food & Health Dr Ko Wing-man said today the Government is taking a holistic approach to prevent the spread of tuberculosis, which remains one of the most infectious diseases worldwide.
Speaking at a ceremony to mark 2013 World TB Day, Dr Ko said the Government needs a series of comprehensive measures which are both acceptable to, and supported by, the community to fight the disease.
Centre for Health Protection chest clinics provide the public with examinations and full-term outpatient treatment free of charge, he said.
The centre's TB Laboratory was designated as the World Health Organisation's Supranational TB Reference Laboratory, providing quality support for testing of the TB bacteria.
The Hospital Authority provides inpatient services to TB patients to ensure timely and effective management of the disease.
In Hong Kong, there were about 5,000 notified cases in 2012 at a rate of 70 cases per 100,000 members of the population, near the historical low for Hong Kong.
Speaking at the ceremony, the centre's controller Dr Leung Ting-hung said the emergence of drug-resistant TB in recent years has aroused concern.
Hong Kong Government has adopted the Directly Observed Treatment method, in which patients take medication regularly and complete the course of drug therapy under the direct observation and support of healthcare staff to minimise the possibility of drug resistance.