Tuberculosis infection in Nunavut is up to 50x higher than elsewhere in Canada

Dr. Gonzalez Alvarez, Lung Specialist

Tuberculosis (TB) kills nearly 1.5 million people annually, mostly in developing countries, but Canada isn't immune to this disease, with about 1,600 new cases of TB reported here every year. In Canada TB occurs mostly among immigrants arriving in Canada for the first time – and amongst Indigenous peoples who continue to be disproportionately affected by this disease. The incidence of TB infection in Nunavut is up to 50 times higher than elsewhere in Canada for instance.

Dr. Gonzalo Alvarez’s research focuses on studying lung health in disadvantaged populations specifically among Canadian Inuit and in new Canadians.  He is currently leading studies to treat latent, or "sleeping" TB, which, while it is not contagious, has a 10 per cent chance of developing into active tuberculosis. 

Respirologist Dr. Gonzalo Alvarez is a scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute and Associate Professor at the University Faculty of Medicine.

He will be presenting his research at next week’s TB conference in Vancouver, the largest annual TB conference held n North America. The BC Lung Asociation serves as conference secretariat.

TB is the #1 infectious killer in the world.  It’s a disease we can diagnose, treat and cure and yet of 10.4 diagnosed each year, 1.5 million die.

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Page Last Updated: 05/05/2019