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Chee CB, Gan SH, Chua AP, Wang YT
Correspondence: Dr Cynthia BE Chee, email@example.com
Singapore has experienced a rise in the tuberculosis (TB) incidence rate among her local population since 2008, which we believe, is contributed in no small part to a recent increase in community transmission due to delayed diagnosis of infectious pulmonary TB cases. Data from the TB notification registry showed an increase from 2004 to 2008 in the number and proportion of sputum acid-fast bacilli smear-positive pulmonary TB cases with prolonged cough. Two surveys at the TB Control Unit showed that healthcare system delays exceeded patient delay in seeking medical consultation. There is thus an urgent need to heighten TB awareness among the public and the medical community in order to reduce the time taken to diagnose infectious TB cases in Singapore.
Keywords: diagnostic delay, healthcare system, infectious, tuberculosis
Singapore Med J 2012; 53(8): 505–507