AMMAN — A total of 162 cases of tuberculosis (TB) were diagnosed in Jordan in the first six months of the year, 116 of them among Jordanians, a Ministry of Health official said on Sunday.
Khalid Abu Rumman, director of the ministry’s respiratory diseases department, said the other 46 cases were found in non-Jordanians who held residency permits.
Although he declined to comment on the number of cases per nationality, Abu Rumman said the patients included Egyptian, Indonesian, Sri Lankan and Filipino workers.
He also noted that an additional 50 TB cases were diagnosed among visitors of other nationalities who came to Jordan either for treatment or as refugees. These cases are not counted in the total figure as the patients do not reside in Jordan.
Of these, he said, 18 cases were among Libyans and 16 among Syrian refugees, while the rest were visitors of other nationalities.
Meanwhile, Abu Rumman told The Jordan Times that the respiratory diseases department has signed cooperation agreements with four health organisations working in the Kingdom.
“These organisations will help us raise public awareness on TB and other communicable diseases,” he said.
He explained that the ministry needs the help of other institutions to achieve the World Health Organisation’s goal of reducing the TB prevalence rate to one case per 100,000 by 2020.
“Thus, we need partners to work with us,” Abu Rumman noted.
According to the ministry’s figures, the current TB prevalence rate in Jordan is five cases per 100,000 people.
According to official figures, 233 TB cases were detected among Jordanians in 2011, compared to 232 cases in 2010 and 272 in 2009.