Mobile Version - November - December 2018

From the Director Dr. Jonathan Mermin

The CDC estimates nearly 2.4 million people in the United States were living with hepatitis C between 2013 and the end of 2016. The findings, published today in the journal Hepatology, indicate that the nation faces an urgent need to diagnose and treat more people who have this deadly, yet curable disease. People infected with hepatitis C can be cured with the appropriate therapy, but the majority of those infected have not yet benefitted from treatment. Diagnosing and treating people living with hepatitis C is key to preventing needless deaths and stopping the rising toll of new infections. We know what to do:

  • Expand testing to reach all who are at risk,
  • Remove treatment barriers among those already living with hepatitis C,
  • Intensify prevention services to stop new infections, and
  • Improve surveillance to identify and interrupt transmission.

Winning the fight against hepatitis C will take a substantial and focused national effort to implement these steps and reach those already living with and those at risk for hepatitis C infection.

STD Surveillance Report

New data from CDC´s recently released Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance Report, 2017 show cases of congenital syphilis (syphilis passed from a mother to her baby during pregnancy or delivery) have more than doubled since 2013, with a total of 918 cases in 2017. This is the highest number of recorded cases in 20 years. It is easy to cure syphilis during pregnancy with the right antibiotics. If left untreated, a pregnant woman with syphilis has up to an 80 percent chance of passing it on to her baby. When passed from mother to baby during pregnancy or delivery, syphilis can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, long-term cognitive and physical problems, and death of a newborn. To reduce the number of babies born with syphilis, it is critical for all pregnant women to visit a health care provider as soon as possible during every pregnancy and to be tested for syphilis.

TB Surveillance Report

CDC also recently released Reported Tuberculosis in the United States, 2017 indicating that there were 9,105 total TB cases reported in the United States in 2017. Although this is the lowest number of TB cases in the United States on record, too many people still suffer from this disease. Ending TB will require maintaining and strengthening current TB control priorities while increasing efforts to identify and treat latent TB infection in high-risk populations. This report will be a useful tool in informing and improving TB prevention and control activities. CDC also developed a slide set, fact sheet, infographic, web graphics, and customizable infographic template to support TB education and outreach to clinicians, health care agencies, and community organizations.