The Ottawa federal government promised Friday to eradicate tuberculosis (TB) by 2030, less than a week after the death of an Inuit teenager from the causes related to this disease.
The officials promise a 50% reduction in the TB cases by 2025
Minister of Aboriginal Services, Jane Philpott, made the announcement along with the president of Inuits, Tapiriit Kanatami, from an Inuit rights organization. She also promised a 50% reduction in tuberculosis cases by 2025.
“The Government of Canada will make every effort to fulfill its commitment,” said Philpott in a statement. “However, this day should have come a long time ago and we are determined to implement a strategy that is both supported and led by the community,” she added.
The government of the Inuit Autonomous Territory of Nunatsiavut, Labrador, confirmed Thursday that the death of an Inuit teenager late last week was caused by tuberculosis-related complications.
The tuberculosis is still causing deaths, worldwide
The World Health Organization (WHO) has drawn attention to the danger of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis for a long time now. It has come to this situation because the tuberculosis bacillus, in certain situations, becomes resistant to the most potent drugs which are commonly administered.
Specialists believe that the main cause of antibiotic-resistant bacteria that cause TB is the discontinuation or incorrect administration of antibiotic treatment. In most cases, the treatment of resistant tuberculosis is successful but may take as much as 6 months.
Unfortunately, in some cases, tuberculosis is not at all responding to treatment and causes the death of the patient.
A 14-year-old teenager died of tuberculosis
“This is a tragic situation and all our thoughts are with the family,” said Nunatsiavut President Johannes Lampe.
The 14-year-old teenager from the community of Nain, in the Labrador coast, had to be evacuated by medical transportation twice before giving up his last breath at a hospital in St. John’s, Newfoundland, according to the report issued and released by the Nunatsiavut Government.
Although tuberculosis is contagious, Johannes Lampe believes that community members are not at “imminent risk” of an epidemic, since the tuberculosis is transmitted only through close contact.
According to Aboriginal Services Canada, in 2016, the incidence rate of tuberculosis was 300 times higher among Inuit than among non-Aboriginal people.
In conclusion, the Federal Government of Canada promises to eradicate tuberculosis by 2030 after the death of a 14-year-old Inuit caused by TB-related causes.