Huntington Beach, California, March 23, 2023
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) reports there were 1,750 new cases of tuberculosis (TB) in the state as recently as 2021, a three percent increase compared to the year before. TB cases were recorded in 42 of California’s 61 local health jurisdictions and CDPH estimates that more than two million Californians have latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI).
TB is caused by a bacterium known as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It typically attacks the lungs, but can also attack other parts of the body. The disease can be spread from a person with the disease of the lungs or throat through the air from one person to another when they cough, sneeze, speak, or sing. This occurs when people nearby breathe in the bacteria and then become infected, which is why transmission can be a significant risk in healthcare environments and other places where many people share the same space for extended periods of time.
To raise awareness and educate the public about the impact of TB, and to support efforts to prevent new cases of the disease, March 24th is recognized as World TB Day. In California, CDPH has partnered with community clinics and health departments throughout the state to create the TB Free California initiative. The partnership is committed to increasing awareness, testing, and treatment, particularly for communities that are at high risk of developing TB.?
“According to CDPH, the medical and societal costs of TB in California were over $200 million in 2021,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager of LA Testing’s Huntington Beach facility. “The good news is TB is preventable. At LA Testing, our network of laboratories help to stop the spread of Mycobacterium tuberculosis by offering highly sensitive real-time Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) techniques to identify it from air samples collected on special filter cassettes. Air testing can be especially valuable when assessing infection control procedures in highly sensitive environments.”
LA Testing sponsored an educational video about World TB Day several years ago that can still be seen at: https://youtu.be/CkmUIG-IyHQ
To learn more about environmental testing for Mycobacterium tuberculosis or other pathogens, please visit www.LATesting.com, email info@LATesting.com or call (800) 755-1794.
About LA Testing
LA Testing is California’s leading laboratory for industrial hygiene and indoor environmental quality testing of bacteria, radon, asbestos, mold, lead, VOCs, formaldehyde, soot, char, ash and smoke damage, particulates and other chemicals. In addition, LA Testing offers a full range of air sampling and investigative equipment to professionals and the general public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA LAP LLC., AIHA ELLAP, AIHA EMLAP and AIHA IHLAP, CDC ELITE, NVLAP, State of California, State of Hawaii Department of Health and other states. LA Testing, along with the EMSL Analytical, Inc. network, has multiple laboratories throughout California including South Pasadena, Huntington Beach, San Leandro and San Diego.