Editorial: U.S. must lead fight against tuberculosis

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The prospect of a national or global tuberculosis epidemic is frightening – particularly one in which the culprit is a drug-resistant strain, such as the one in the highly publicized recent case of an infected airline traveler.

In part, that is because TB is a once-dreaded disease we have largely forgotten about in this country, since immunizations virtually eradicated it. The emphasis is appropriate, because the recent case of Atlanta lawyer Andrew Speaker, who traveled to Europe and Canada and then crossed the border into the United States, shows that neither nature nor mankind goes away quietly.

The United States is vulnerable, both from inside and certainly from outside, where TB continues to ravage millions of people every year, notably in Africa and Asia.

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