Los Angeles County
Department of Public Health
Tuberculosis Control Program
2615 S. Grand Avenue, Room 507
Los Angeles, CA 90007
Phone: (213) 745-0800
Fax: (213) 749-0926
Tuberculosis Control Program
Los Angeles County Department of Health Services
Public Health Programs and ServicesTuberculosis Control Program
1997 Fact Sheet
Tuberculosis in the Foreign Born
- In 1997, 19,855 cases of TB were reported in the United States. This represents a 7% decrease from 1996 (21,337 cases). Of these 19,855 cases, 7,702 (39%) were foreign born. These 7,702 cases represent essentially no change in the number of foreign-born cases nationally since 1996 (7,704). However, there has been a steady increase in foreign born-cases since the mid-1980s. Tuberculosis case rates among the foreign born are consistently four to five times higher than among U.S. born persons. 1
- In 1997, 4,059 cases of TB were reported in California. This represents a 6% decrease from 1996 (4,313 cases). Of these 4,059 cases, 2,815 (69%) were foreign born. These 2,815 cases represent a decrease of <1% in the number of foreign born cases since 1996 (2,843). Persons from Mexico, the Philippines, and Vietnam make up 66% (1,861) of the total foreign- born cases. 2
- In 1997, 1,347 cases of TB were reported in Los Angeles County. This represents a 2% decrease from 1996 (1,375 cases). Of these 1,347 cases, 963 (71%) were foreign-born. These 963 cases represent a 4% increase in the number of foreign born since 1996 (910). Cases were reported from 61 different foreign countries in 1997. Los Angeles County comprises 12% of the national foreign-born cases.
- Of the 963 foreign born TB cases, 350 (36%) were from Mexico, 166 (17%) were from the Philippines, 72 (7%) were from Vietnam, 69 (7%) were from South Korea and 50 (5%) were from China.
- More males with TB in the foreign-born population were reported than females. In 1997, 603 (63%) of the foreign-born cases were male and 360 (37%) were female.
- The age group with the largest number of reported foreign-born TB cases was the 15-34 year old age group with 292 cases (30%), followed by the 65+ age group with 225 cases (23%) and the 35-44 age group with 171 cases (18%).
- There were 37 (3%) homeless cases of TB among the foreign-born population reported in Los Angeles County in 1997. Twenty-eight of these cases were Hispanic from Mexico, Guatemala, and El Salvador. Of all homeless cases reported in 1997 (115 cases), 32% were foreign born.
- In 1997, there were 58 (6%) confirmed cases of TB co-infected with HIV among the foreign born. Forty-six (79%) cases were Hispanic from Mexico, Guatemala, and El Salvador.
- Seventy-eight percent (753) of foreign-born cases in 1997 were confirmed on the basis of a positive culture. This is comparable to the U.S. born population in which 73% of cases were confirmed on the basis of positive bacteriology.
1 CDC. Tuberculosis Morbidity- United States, 1997. MMWR 1998; 47: 253-257.
2 California Department of Health Services. Report on Tuberculosis in California, 1996. April 1997 (p. 14). California Department of Health Services. Report on Tuberculosis in California, 1997. April 1998 (p.14).
HTM Version 10/26/98