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The Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County Tuberculosis Control and Prevention Program’s goal is to eliminate this deadly disease

March 20, 2018

Miami, Fla. –The Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County joins the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in recognizing World TB Day, which commemorates the discovery of the bacteria that causes tuberculosis (TB). This year’s theme is “Wanted: Leaders for a TB-Free United States. We can make history. End TB” and eliminating tuberculosis in Florida remains a priority for the department.

“World TB Day serves as a reminder that tuberculosis is still a very significant public health concern. Tuberculosis continues to affect the lives of millions of people worldwide each year even though it can be cured,” said Dr. Lillian Rivera, RN, MSN, PhD, Administrator/Health Officer of the Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County.

In observance of World TB Day, the Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County is hosting a health fair in collaboration with Jackson Health System on Thursday, March 22, 2018 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at Alamo Park, located at 1150 NW 16th Street, Miami, Florida 33136.

Tuberculosis is one of the world’s deadliest diseases and it is caused by a bacterium called mycobacterium tuberculosis that usually attacks the lungs, but can attack any part of the body, including the kidney, spine and brain. Latent TB can live within the body without making you sick. People with latent TB do not have symptoms, are not infectious and cannot make others sick.

TB is spread through the air and symptoms of the disease include:

  • A bad cough that lasts three weeks or longer;
  • Pain in the chest;
  • Coughing up blood or sputum; and
  • Weakness or fatigue, weight loss, loss of appetite, chills, fever and sweating at night.

Through its statewide TB program and its support of the Florida System of Tuberculosis Care, the department is making significant strides towards its goal to eliminate TB in the state. Cases of TB in Florida have gone down by 48.07 percent from 980 cases in 2007 to 549 in 2017. Cases of TB in Miami-Dade County have gone down by 54.05 percent from 182 cases in 2007 to 99 in 2017. The department has implemented improved testing, incentives and enablers, and treatment technologies, making it easier for clients to successfully complete therapy.

To explore resources relating to TB and lean more, visit the department’s website. For additional information about World TB Day 2018, visit the CDC’s World TB Day page.