Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
World Tuberculosis Day 2020 It’s Time.pdf (297.42 kB)

World Tuberculosis Day 2020: It’s time

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-08-31, 08:13 authored by James O'Connell, Eoghan De BarraEoghan De Barra, Samuel McConkeySamuel McConkey

The 24th of March was chosen as World Tuberculosis Day to raise public awareness about the disease. It is also the day Robert Koch announced his discovery of the Mycobacterium bacillus as the cause of tuberculosis (TB) in 1882. Latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) is a state of persistent immune response to stimulation by Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens with no evidence of clinically manifest active disease. The incidence of tuberculosis disease in Ireland is now low at 6.6/100,000 population. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has set the goal of a 90% reduction in global TB incidence by 2035 when compared to 2015. Unless improvements in TB prevention and control are made in Ireland it is unlikely we will achieve this target. The WHO End TB Strategy states that the systematic identification and management of LTBI in groups of people at high risk of reactivation is an essential part of TB elimination in low-incidence countries. The Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of TB 2010 recommend the screening of people living with HIV, persons on immunosuppressive therapy, healthcare workers, people who use intravenous drugs, people who are homeless and people from countries with a high incidence of TB.



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Published Citation

O'Connell J, de Barra E, McConkey S. World Tuberculosis Day 2020: It's time. Ir Med J. 2020;113(2):17.

Publication Date

13 February 2020

PubMed ID



  • International Health and Tropical Medicine
  • Beaumont Hospital


Irish Medical Association


  • Published Version (Version of Record)