World Tuberculosis Day - 2019

24 Mar 2019

World Tuberculosis Day, marked each year on 24 March, is an occasion to raise awareness and advocate for efforts to eliminate TB. It is high time to end TB.

World TB day 2019 text

Ending TB is more timely than ever. The United Nations High-Level Meeting on TB held in September 2018 saw global leaders renew their commitment to end TB by 2030, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). WHO’s End TB Strategy has set sub-targets for measuring progress towards the SDGs:

  • TB incidence 80% lower in 2030 compared with 2015
  • 90% fewer TB deaths; and
  • no family facing catastrophic costs due to TB.

When the situation is evaluated based on the sub-target for TB incidence, the challenge ahead becomes evident. Though the EU/EEA TB notification rate has declined since 2015, it has only reached 10.7 per 100 000 population so far and the 80% reduction would entail a target notification rate of 2.4 per 100 000 population.

How can these targets be reached by 2030? The latest WHO/ECDC report Tuberculosis surveillance and monitoring in Europe 2019 (2017 data) indicates that epidemic patterns vary between countries in the EU/EEA. Notably, many struggle to treat patients successfully – in 2017, fewer than half of the patients with multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) were treated successfully and for extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), the more resistant form of the disease, the situation is even more grim. In order to reach the SDG target on TB, new intersectoral approaches are required, current tools need to be used more effectively and a people-centred approach to care is paramount. 

ECDC will continue to offer scientific advice, tailored country support and coordinate efforts across borders to support the EU/EEA countries in their efforts. See the latest news and resources below and take part in the World TB Day campaign on social media.

Latest news & reports

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All materials available can be reused for non-commercial purposes. 

Tuberculosis surveillance and monitoring

Together with the World Health Organization’s Regional Office for Europe, ECDC collects and disseminates TB surveillance data for the European region. The eleventh annual TB Surveillance Report presented the key findings on TB trends and an overview of the TB situation in Europe.

Online resources on TB

Find a multitude of materials on TB from countries and organisations.

European Union Standards for Tuberculosis Care

ECDC and the European Respiratory Society (ERS) have developed the European Union Standards for Tuberculosis Care (ESTC). These standards are tailored to EU/EEA settings and are in line with accepted international principles and guidelines. The goal of the standards is to help public health experts, clinicians and healthcare programmes in TB prevention and control, bridging current gaps in the case management of TB in the EU/EEA. The standards are available in all EU/EEA official languages.

Management of latent tuberculosis infection

Latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) carriers are asymptomatic and not infectious. Around 10% of LTBI carriers develop active TB at a later stage. In low incidence countries, a majority of TB cases occur due to the progression of LTBI from passive to active disease. This is why it is crucial to improve management of LTBI in Europe. ECDC has developed various guidance documents and tools to help EU/EEA countries prevent and control LTBI.

New peer-reviewed articles

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Join the conversation

This year’s global World TB Day theme championed by Stop TB Partnership is ‘It’s Time’, see their online and social media resources here.  

Take part in the social media campaign with #ItsTimetoEndTB #WorldTBDay2019 #EndTB #Tuberculosis #TB #SDG #SDG3

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