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Center for TB Research

Zero TB in Tibetan Kids

Tuberculosis (TB) is the single most important public health problem in the Tibetan community today. Rates of TB in the Tibetan population living in exile in India are nearly three times higher than rates in India as a whole and more than 150 times higher than rates in the Unites States. Tibetan refugees are at particular risk for TB transmission because more than half of this population resides in congregate settings such as boarding schools, monasteries and nunneries. The epidemic of tuberculosis among the Tibetan population is largely driven by TB disease in youth, especially schoolchildren.

The government of Tibet has been headquartered in Dharamsala, India since 1959. Several thousand exiled Tibetans, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, reside in and around Dharamsala. The Tibetan community is a unique population bound by deep cultural, spiritual, political, and historical ties, and the high concentration of Tibetans living in this relatively small area presents an ideal opportunity to fight TB.

The objective of the Zero TB in Tibetan Kids project is to reduce the rates of TB in this population through the implementation of a model system of TB care. Project activities will include community awareness building, active TB case finding, TB case management and a preventive therapy program. The long-term goal of the project is to eliminate TB disease in Tibetan children.

Learn how you can help eliminate TB in Tibetan children in exile.