Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Parts of London have higher TB rates than Iraq or Rwanda per BBC News

The BBC report that parts of London now have a rate of tuberculosis infection higher than Rwanda or Iraq. The BBC report is keen to persuade is not to blame this on immigration:
'The rate of infection among UK-born Londoners has risen, while among the non-UK-born it has fallen - and the report said it would be wrong to assume TB was a disease of migrants.'
Of course rates are not measures of absolute numbers and that last section isn't saying what the BBC wants you to think that it is. 

The BBC want you to think that line says that it would be wrong to assume TB was a disease caused by immigration. Whereas it actually means that TB is no longer a disease just of migrants because it has spread.

I read that BBC report and was reminded of a report I read back in the early 2000s that said that mass immigration from Eastern Europe was bringing with it TB, a disease that had all but been eradicated from the UK. I seem to remember that claim being dismissed as racist at the time and the fuss went away, unlike the TB.
Take a look at this New Scientist report  from January this year. Here's a section that needs wider attention:
'Russia and Eastern Europe still have high rates of MDR TB today. Spiro says that many of the cases he sees in London, the TB capital of Europe, can be traced back to those countries. "The control over treatment regimes out there is dreadful," he says. "It's chaos." The number of MDR cases has been rising in England from 28 cases per year in 2000 to 81 cases in 2012.'
So do you believe the, so far as I am aware, independent New Scientist or the decidedly pro immigration BBC? The choice is yours.

1 comment:

Wiser Monkeys said...

You may be interested in our graphic which shows TB incidence in London against ethnicity from the 2011 census data: