Sunday, March 25, 2007

FilipinOnline NEWS:

Filipinos cause high TB rates, U.S. official says

A U.S. government official is blaming Filipino immigrants for a Northern California county's high incidence of tuberculosis cases.

Solano County's Vallejo, home to many Fil Ams, is one of the nation's top 20 hot spots for TB.

Ron Chapman, the county's public health officer, said to a newspaper that one of the chief reasons for Vallejo's high ranking is due to its large number of Filipino immigrants.

Per Contra Costa Times: "He noted that the Philippines has the sixth-highest number of TB cases in the world. He added that the Filipino government works closely with the local health department to identify arrivals who suffer from the illness."

Tuberculosis cases statewide dropped to their lowest point since 1985. But from 2005 to 2006, there were more cases in 20 counties.

California has 10 of the nation's top big cities with TB cases, including San Francisco, San Jose, San Diego, Los Angeles, Stockton, Oakland, Sacramento, Ventura and Fresno.

The number of TB cases in California is at an all-time low but some drug-resistant strains have health officials worried.

The falling national TB rates is alarming cities with high immigrant population because they fear funding cuts.

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