Tuberculosis cases are on the rise in California, reversing decades-long trend

Santa Clara County in Northern California saw a 19% increase in tuberculosis cases between 2022 and 2023. It's a trend that is also happening statewide, The Mercury News reported Jan. 30.

Data from the California Department of Public Health shows that cases had been in decline until 2020 when they sunk to an all-time low as testing and treatments were largely postponed, and have since sharply gone up year-over-year. 

Though the increase has not yet passed pre-pandemic levels, it is nearing them. 

"This is a 'slow burn' of an age-old disease that's now increasing, probably because we let our guard down and didn't emphasize the need for prevention of progression from latent illness to active tuberculosis," Priya Shete, MD, an associate professor of medicine and epidemiology at the University of California San Francisco told The Mercury News.

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