A Guide to Action

Step 1: Awareness. Be aware of the dangers of MDR-TB. I have spoken at length of the many parts of the world suffering from this affliction in my Breaking news section. The overwhelming theme is how prevalent it is held against the ignorance that permeates the West.

Step 2: Act Globally. Vote for candidates who have the following world-view: The see the world as an interconnected system of events. These candidates are not bound by nationalistic views that preclude us from intervening in parts of the world when we are building an infrastructure to prevent a pandemic. The side-benefits of this are numerous, and extend far beyond the scope of MDR-TB.

Step 3: Finish your meds, if you even start them. This is advice I feel needs to transcend the issue of MDR-TB. Stopping any antibiotics before completion puts us all at risk. Also, it is estimated that roughly 65% of antibiotics prescribed in this country are for viruses. This is a useless practice, and needs to stop. Burt back to my main focus, should you or anyone you know ever contract TB you must make sure the medication is finished.

Step 4: Support the global fight against AIDS. AIDS has in churned up in its wake the specter of MDR-TB. The link is not absolute, but by donating time or money to local AIDS groups, groups that encourage the use of contraceptives, and other AIDS health groups you are making a visible impact on MDR-TB.

Step 5: Support an integrated and enlightened approach to fighting MDR-TB. This encompasses steps 1-4, but also a number of other issues. The South African plan of dumping patients over the border is an obvious example of not heeding any of steps. Instead we must keep up with the science of MDR-TB and create a plan that is both compassionate and scientifically sound.

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