Tuberculosis outbreak in Pangnirtung, Nunavut, continues to grow
Tuberculosis continues to spread in Pangnirtung, Nunavut, where 161 people have now been diagnosed with active or latent TB since Jan. 1 last year.
About 1,600 people live in the hamlet. Thirty-five of them have been diagnosed with active TB and 126 with latent TB.
Latent TB isn't contagious, according to Nunavut's health department, but still needs to be treated to stop it from becoming active.
The latest numbers, announced Friday morning, represent an increase from three months ago, when 31 people had been diagnosed with active TB and 108 with latent TB.
Nunavut declared an outbreak of the disease in Pangnirtung on Nov. 25, 2021.
The health department says anyone exposed to an active case should visit the health centre for screening. They should also get screened if they're showing symptoms of TB.
Symptoms of active TB include a cough that lasts longer than three weeks, feeling very tired, loss of appetite and a fever or night sweats.
In the past, the territory has resisted calls to report cases of tuberculosis by community, arguing there's a stigma around the disease.
Earlier this year, the territory's privacy commissioner said Nunavut needs to be more transparent about the illness and share statistics about which demographics are affected.