Many cases of TB missed in UK immigrants

Many cases of tuberculosis are not being detected in Britain following the current screening method for new immigrants. Scientists have stated that the method of figuring out TB cases should be changed and people from Indian subcontinent should be included more in these tests.

Britain has been seen to the only country in the Western Europe to witness TB’s rising cases and following this it has been termed as the tuberculosis capital of Europe.

Countries that have a TB rate of about 40 per 100,000 people are included for a check on arrival at Britain according to the current British border policies and they have to undergo an X-ray for TB check.

African countries due to their high incidences are included in this check but countries like Bangladesh, Pakistan and India are excluded.

About 50 per cent of people who are infected by TB die and it is a bacterial infection which is normally asymptomatic.

When people arrive, not many are seen to be active TB carriers but most of them are carriers and this with passage of time take shape of active TB after they arrive in the UK.

Andrew George, chair of a parliamentary group on global TB, said, "Tuberculosis has become a 'forgotten disease' in recent decades," he said in a statement. "We need a new and a more concerted approach to detecting, preventing and treating TB among those coming to live and work in the UK."