Saturday, April 3, 2010

How serious is the TB problem locally ?

Tuberculosis (TB) the once 'fearful' disease has disappeared from Singapore scene for a number of years. We don't hear it mentioned anymore. Now it is H1N1, Sars...etc. So if you mentioned 'TB', they thought you said 'TV'. Some may not even know what TB stands for, with so many acronym already in used locally.

Thus it came as a surprised when I saw a short clip on it over the television (similar to govt campaigns clips). Then it was reported in the papers that the government is giving free treatment to those who has contacted TB even if they are not PR or citizens.

Now this is something - our govt don't give free health treatment (even to the old and needy local citizens). Especially now that they committed to have differential treatment for citizens vs foreigners. (note : the general election is coming, hence they are doing this to win citizens' heart and votes)

So if they are giving free medical treatment to foreigners, it could only mean that the problem is serious and prevalent amongst them. The issue has definitely worry them enough for the wide publicity. If not contain, we could have a major outbreak as Singapore is now overcrowded and pack like sardines. Ideal media for the spread of a contagious disease like TB. Take for example our public transport like the MRT and buses - enclosed environment, recirculated air and dense crowd.

With the high influx of foreign workers from all over the world, it is not surprising if they bring with them contagious diseases like TB.

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