Health Status of Canadians 2016: Report of the Chief Public Health Officer - How are we unhealthy? - Tuberculosis
How are we unhealthy?
In 2014, 1,568 new and re-treatment cases of tuberculosis (TB) were reported in Canada, resulting in a rate of just over 4 per 100,000 population.Footnote 1
Tuberculosis (TB) is a curable bacterial infection that spreads from person to person primarily through the air.Footnote 2
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Drug-resistant TB is a major global public health issue. Rates of drug-resistant TB are currently low in Canada.Footnote 3
The number and rates of new TB cases have been decreasing.Footnote 1
- 1,612 new or re-treatment cases in 2004 for a rate of 5 per 100,000 population.
- 1,568 new or re-treatment cases in 2014 for a rate of just over 4 per 100,000 population.
Data at a national level are not available on TB by income. Research has shown that living in a low-income household is one of the risk factors for the transmission of TB.Footnote 4
In 2014, rates of TB were 5 new or re-treatment cases per 100,000 population for men and 4 per 100,000 population for women.Footnote 1
In 2014, rates of new or re-treated cases of TB were lowest in children and highest in people 75 years and older (see Figure 1)Footnote 1.
In 2014, Indigenous populations made up 4% of the total Canadian population, but accounted for 21% of reported cases of TB. This resulted in a rate of 20 new or re-treatment cases per 100,000 of the Indigenous population.Footnote 1 Rates vary across Indigenous populations. The rate of TB among Inuit is almost 50 times higher than the overall Canadian rate.Footnote 1
In 2014, the foreign-born population, which represented approximately 22% of the total Canadian population, accounted for 69% of reported new or re-treatment cases of TB for rate of almost 14 cases per 100,000 population.Footnote 1
In 2015, there was an estimated 10 million new cases of TB across the world.Footnote 5 In G7 countries, Canada had the second lowest rate of new cases of TB at just over 4 cases per 100,000 population.Footnote 6 The United States had the lowest rate at 3 per 100,000 population while Japan had the highest at 17 per 100,000 population (see Figure 2)Footnote 6.
Notes to the reader
- Annual rates of TB are calculated by using the number of new active and re-treatment cases each year. A re-treatment case occurs when a person who was previously diagnosed with TB has a second diagnosis of TB (i.e., reactivated or new infection). To be considered a re-treatment case, the disease must have been inactive for at least six months between the first and second diagnosis.Footnote 1
- Indigenous populations consist of First Nations, Métis and Inuit.
- G7 countries include seven of the world's industrialized countries, namely the United States, Japan, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Canada, that form an informal discussion group and economic partnership.
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