Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Detaining patients is justified to contain deadly TB strain in South Africa say experts

23.01.2007
A team of medical ethics and public health experts say tough isolation measures, involuntary if need be, are justified to contain a deadly, contagious, drug-resistant strain of TB in South Africa and to prevent “a potentially explosive international health crisis.”

In a policy paper in the international health journal PLoS Medicine, Dr Jerome Singh of the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in Durban, South Africa (who is also an Adjunct Professor at the Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto) and colleagues say that “the forced isolation and confinement of extensively drug resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) and multiple drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) infected individuals may be a proportionate response in defined situations given the extreme risk posed.”

On September 01, 2006, the World Health Organisation announced that a deadly new strain of XDR-TB had been detected in Tugela Ferry, a rural town in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal, the epicentre of South Africa’s HIV/AIDS epidemic. Of the 544 patients studied in the area in 2005, 221 had MDR-TB (Mycobacterium tuberculosis resistant to at least rifampicin and isoniazid). Of these 221 cases, 53 were identified as XDR-TB (i.e. MDR-TB plus resistance to at least three of the six classes of second line drug treatments). Of the 53, 44 were tested for HIV and all were HIV infected.

This strain of XDR-TB in Kwazulu-Natal proved to be particularly deadly: 52 of the 53 patients died (within a median of 16 days of the initial collection of sputum for diagnostic purposes).

But the authors say that there have been a number of obstacles in the way of dealing effectively with the crisis. “The South African government’s initial lethargic reaction to the crisis,” they say, “and uncertainty amongst South African health professionals concerning the ethical, social and human rights implications of effectively tackling this outbreak highlights the need to address these issues as a matter of urgency lest doubt and inaction spawns a full-blown XDR-TB epidemic in South Africa and beyond.”

Andrew Hyde | alfa
Further information:
http://www.plosmedicine.org

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First diode for magnetic fields

Innsbruck quantum physicists have constructed a diode for magnetic fields and then tested it in the laboratory. The device, developed by the research groups led by the theorist Oriol Romero-Isart and the experimental physicist Gerhard Kirchmair, could open up a number of new applications.

Electric diodes are essential electronic components that conduct electricity in one direction but prevent conduction in the opposite one. They are found at the...

Im Focus: Nonstop Tranport of Cargo in Nanomachines

Max Planck researchers revel the nano-structure of molecular trains and the reason for smooth transport in cellular antennas.

Moving around, sensing the extracellular environment, and signaling to other cells are important for a cell to function properly. Responsible for those tasks...

Im Focus: UNH scientists help provide first-ever views of elusive energy explosion

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.

Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Optical Coherence Tomography: German-Japanese Research Alliance hosted Medical Imaging Conference

19.11.2018 | Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helping to Transport Proteins Inside the Cell

21.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Meta-surface corrects for chromatic aberrations across all kinds of lenses

21.11.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Removing toxic mercury from contaminated water

21.11.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>