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Editorials |

Tuberculosis in Correctional Facilities : A Nightmare Without End in Sight

Rafael Laniado-Laborín, MD, MPH
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Affiliations: Tijuana, México 
 ,  Dr. Laniado-Laborín is a pulmonologist at Hospital General de Tijuana.

Correspondence to: Rafael Laniado-Laborín, MD, MPH, PMB 953, 482 W San Ysidro Blvd, No. 2, San Ysidro, CA 92173; e-mail: laniado@net-pla.net



Chest. 2001;119(3):681-683. doi:10.1378/chest.119.3.681
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Recent tuberculosis (TB) outbreaks, and an increase in both case rates and drug resistance rates in the prison systems of many regions of the world, have created an urgent need for improvement in the TB control efforts of correctional facilities.

This situation is magnified in underdeveloped countries, where prison TB prevalence rates 5 to 10 times the national average are not uncommon and can be up to 50 times the reported national rate1; in some of those areas, > 50% of the inmates with TB have strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis that are multidrug-resistant (MDR).2 Unfortunately, this is not a problem limited to some distant third-world country; outbreaks of MDR-TB already have been reported in correctional facilities in the United States.3

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