From this Reuters article that we found at the UK's Telegraph, writer Tan Ee Lyn gathered together some statistics on tuberculosis.
Tuberculosis is the world's seventh-leading cause of death. It killed 1.8 million people worldwide last year, up from 1.77 million in 2007. It is one of three primary diseases that are closely linked to poverty, the other two being Aids and malaria.
Some facts about tuberculosis:
* It is spread easily through the air. When infectious people cough, sneeze, talk or spit, they expel the bacteria. Just a small amount is enough for transmission. Someone in the world is newly infected with TB every second.
* Nearly all TB infections are latent, with carriers showing no symptoms and they are not infectious. However, one in 10 will become sick with active TB in his or her lifetime due primarily to a weakened immune system.
* Of the 1.8 million deaths in 2008, or 4,930 deaths a day, half a million were Aids patients. TB affects mostly young adults in their most productive years. The vast majority of TB deaths are in the developing world. More than half occur in Asia.
* The World Health Organization estimates that 9.4 million people developed active TB in 2008, up from 9.27 million in 2007 and 9.24 million in 2006. Among the 15 countries with the highest TB incidence rates in 2007, 13 were in Africa, while half of all new cases were in six Asian countries - Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan and the Philippines.
* TB is the seventh-highest cause of mortality in poor countries.