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Peruvian Brings Drug Resistant TB To US

From a positively giddy Associated Press:

This Oct. 5, 2009 photo shows tuberculosis and HIV patient Vancherleum Maharathanaing, 33, looking out from the isolation ward at Wat Prabat Nampu, in Lopburi, Thailand.

First case of highly drug-resistant TB found in US

By Margie Mason And Martha Mendoza, Associated Press Writers Sun Dec 27

LANTANA, Fla. – It started with a cough, an autumn hack that refused to go away.

Then came the fevers. They bathed and chilled the skinny frame of Oswaldo Juarez, a 19-year-old Peruvian visiting to study English. His lungs clattered, his chest tightened and he ached with every gasp. During a wheezing fit at 4 a.m., Juarez felt a warm knot rise from his throat. He ran to the bathroom sink and spewed a mouthful of blood.

I’m dying, he told himself, "because when you cough blood, it’s something really bad."

It was really bad, and not just for him.

Doctors say Juarez’s incessant hack was a sign of what they have both dreaded and expected for years — this country’s first case of a contagious, aggressive, especially drug-resistant form of tuberculosis. The Associated Press learned of his case, which until now has not been made public, as part of a six-month look at the soaring global challenge of drug resistance.

Juarez’s strain — so-called extremely drug-resistant (XXDR) TB — has never before been seen in the U.S., according to Dr. David Ashkin, one of the nation’s leading experts on tuberculosis. XXDR tuberculosis is so rare that only a handful of other people in the world are thought to have had it.

"He is really the future," Ashkin said. "This is the new class that people are not really talking too much about. These are the ones we really fear because I’m not sure how we treat them."

Forty years ago, the world thought it had conquered TB and any number of other diseases through the new wonder drugs: Antibiotics. U.S. Surgeon General William H. Stewart announced it was "time to close the book on infectious diseases and declare the war against pestilence won."

Today, all the leading killer infectious diseases on the planet — TB, malaria and HIV among them — are mutating at an alarming rate, hitchhiking their way in and out of countries. The reason: Overuse and misuse of the very drugs that were supposed to save us.

No. These diseases are mutating because so many people, especially in the third world, cannot be bothered to take the full regime of antibiotics.

But in the eyes of the AP, such innocents can never be at fault.

Just as the drugs were a manmade solution to dangerous illness, the problem with them is also manmade. It is fueled worldwide by everything from counterfeit drugmakers to the unintended consequences of giving drugs to the poor without properly monitoring their treatment. Here’s what the AP found:

• In Cambodia, scientists have confirmed the emergence of a new drug-resistant form of malaria, threatening the only treatment left to fight a disease that already kills 1 million people a year.

• In Africa, new and harder to treat strains of HIV are being detected in about 5 percent of new patients. HIV drug resistance rates have shot up to as high as 30 percent worldwide.

In the U.S., drug-resistant infections killed more than 65,000 people last year — more than prostate and breast cancer combined. More than 19,000 people died from a staph infection alone that has been eliminated in Norway, where antibiotics are stringently limited…

This April, the World Health Organization sounded alarms by holding its first drug-resistant TB conference in Beijing. The message was clear — the disease has already spread to all continents and is increasing rapidly. Even worse, WHO estimates only 1 percent of resistant patients received appropriate treatment last year.

"We have seen a huge upburst in resistance," said CDC epidemiologist Dr. Laurie Hicks…

This is just the beginning of an unusually long and detailed piece from the Associated Press.

When you think about it, this story is going to pose a bit of a dilemma for our media masters.

Do they whip up drug resistant tuberculosis as the next pandemic? Or might that hurt their push for open borders and amnesty for all of our illegal alien friends from south of the border?

But since our watchdog media is never bothered by any concerns for consistency, we suspect they will pursue the storyline on both lines.

After all, we need to have the US taxpayer provide healthcare for everyone, everywhere.

And the more expensive the treatment, the better. (It costs more than $100,000 a year to cure drug-resistant TB.)

Healthcare is a human right, after all.

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, December 27th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

9 Responses to “Peruvian Brings Drug Resistant TB To US”

  1. Rusty Shackleford says:

    WAIT!!!! Hoooollld everything!!!

    I need Pelosi’s, Reid’s and all the other lefty-loosie’s opinions on this before this guy gets ANY treatment. He’s here on a visa…and has no income, I’m sure. Therefore he will be sapping the money of the people. I say NYET! (in Russian accent) Comrade Minister Of Health, please to inform visitor with bad disease he must leave for country other than USSA. Our gowernment does not allow for such things. I suggest perhaps, Canada or Denmark.

  2. AmericanIPA says:

    Great. Thank you Mr. Peruvian for your excellent contribution to the United States. I do hope that American taxpayers will pay for his astronomically costly treatment as well as his tuition to study here. It’s the least we can do since we’re all wealthy, white and selfish after all. We take in all the most useful people don’t we? How could we have ever done without another “student”?

  3. puhiawa says:

    “It is only fair that Americans share in the diseases of the world.” Obama

  4. proreason says:

    If Peru had had universal health care when he caught this disease, he wouldn’t have TB today.

    And once ObamyCare passes, we won’t have to worry about this guy, because anybody here who catches his disease will have free health care as well.

    So I can’t see a problem with him being here. (and notice that he’s wearing a mask as well)

    It wouldn’t be compassionate to expel him. And besides, he is undocumented, and is a lock to vote for Obamy in 2012, if he lives that long..

    If a few dozen or hundred or thousand people die, at least we will know that we did a good thing by letting him stay.

    So it’s ok

    (but as a precaution, they should only let white people attend to him)

    • jobeth says:

      “If Peru had had universal health care when he caught this disease, he wouldn’t have TB today.”

      Of course not…He’d be dead…but No TB!. :-D

      And if we play our cards right…we too can have such wonderful plan. We will no longer have to worry about such a lingering death…It will come fairly fast once our Death Panels are in place.

      Poor Peruvian…If only they had Universal Health Care there.

      See? Dear ‘The One’ is always thinking of our best interests.

  5. Liberals Demise says:

    Well…….Thanks alot there skinny!!
    You are dingleBarrys’ kind of people!!

  6. swee says:

    Didn’t Obama just sign the Ryan White bill that allows visitors with HIV to travel freely in the U.S.? Don’t be surprised to see the number of gravely ill foreign patients with HIV to jump dramatically in the next year or so. All with be treated at the taxpayers’ expense.

    • yadayada says:

      HIV treatment is already covered under our current (universal) health care. the dhhs mandates that health insurance companies cover the disease and your premiums pay for it, even if no one in your family ever expects to contract it. you (your premiums) pay for everyone else’s treatment. one of the reasons health insurance costs so much is because we all pay for coverage we don’t need or want. also, about 2-3 times per month I take our prisoners to the hiv clinic for routine maintenance. I see MANY people there getting treatment at tax payer expense (most of the officers call it medicaids).

      aint gonna get no better under obeyme

  7. The Redneck says:

    • In Cambodia, scientists have confirmed the emergence of a new drug-resistant form of malaria, threatening the only treatment left to fight a disease that already kills 1 million people a year.

    The ~only~ treatment left?

    The left still fights tooth and nail against the most effective deterrent to malaria (and typhus, and sleeping sickness, and yellow fever, and literally dozens of diseases) that the world has ever known.

    And then they pretend that they give a damn about our health.

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