Tuberculosis Still a Problem for the North

Friday, January 09, 2004 at 15:34



A noticeable rise in the number of tuberculosis cases in the North has raised the eyebrows of some medical experts in the province.


A recent Health Canada report states that in 2002, 61 of the 89 reported cases of tuberculosis came from the Prince Albert area and the three northern health regions.


The chief medical health officer for the P.A. Parkland Health Authority, Dr. Leo Lanoie, says poverty is the main reason behind the number.


He says the situation might not get much better unless housing conditions and other factors that influence a child’s upbringing improve.


Lanoie notes that TB is a respiratory illness that thrives in close quarters and therefore does very well in communities where money is tight.


The Health Canada report also states that Aboriginal people are more prone to getting the disease than non-Aboriginal people because TB didn’t strike their communities until the late 19th century.