sputum collection bottles Yawar Nazir/ZumaPress

Tomar la ofensiva contra la tuberculosis

SOLNA, SUECIA – La tuberculosis es una de las enfermedades más letales del mundo. Solamente en 2013 causó más de 1,5 millones de muertes y un quinto de las defunciones de adultos en los países de bajos ingresos. Si bien está disminuyendo la estimación de personas que la contraen cada año, el ritmo de decrecimiento ha sido muy lento. Y la tendencia podría revertirse, si se considera la creciente prevalencia de la TBC resistente a múltiples medicamentos.

Sin embargo, hoy el mundo tiene una estrecha ventana de oportunidad para erradicarla. Para aprovecharla será necesario el rápido desarrollo y diseminación de herramientas de diagnóstico eficaces, tratamientos con nuevos medicamentos y vacunas novedosas, e iniciativas para asegurar que los sistemas sanitarios cuenten con el equipamiento para brindar la atención adecuada. No será una tarea fácil.

La buena nueva es que la comunidad internacional parece muy dispuesta a actuar. La Estrategia Global contra la TBC de la Organización Mundial de la Salud para después de 2015, apoyada por la Asamblea Mundial de la Salud en mayo de 2014, apunta a erradicarla para el año 2035. Los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible (ODS), que los 193 estados miembros de la ONU adoptarán formalmente en septiembre, prevén alcanzar este objetivo cinco años antes.

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