Joint Statement from the Chief Public Health Officer of the Public Health Agency of Canada and the Chief Medical Officer of Public Health of Indigenous Services Canada on World Tuberculosis Day 2024

Press Release

From: Public Health Agency of Canada

On March 24th we mark World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, an annual campaign to raise awareness about the health, social and economic consequences of TB. This day is also an opportunity to step up efforts to end the TB epidemic, both in Canada and globally. The theme for World TB Day 2024 continues with the affirmation that, “Yes! We Can End TB!”

TB is preventable and curable, yet it remains one of the most common and deadly infectious diseases worldwide. Although Canada is a low TB incidence country, Indigenous Peoples (with the highest incidence among Inuit), as well as people born outside of Canada, are disproportionately represented among those with active TB. In 2022, more than 1,900 people in Canada were diagnosed with active TB disease.

The Government of Canada is committed to work with partners and stakeholders, with a focus on meaningful engagement and involvement of people with lived experience of TB to identify concrete, collaborative and multi-sectoral action to achieve pan-Canadian TB elimination. With First Nations, Inuit, and Métis, this includes focusing on Indigenous-led solutions to addressing health inequities and the social determinants of health. These include overcrowded housing, food insecurity, poverty and barriers to culturally safe health care. By supporting and working with Indigenous organizations, health authorities, First Nation communities, as well as provincial and territorial governments, we are committed to pushing forward towards our goals of eliminating TB in Inuit Nunangat by 2030, and across the country by 2035. Internationally, Canada is the sixth largest supporter of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria since its inception.

Identifying, treating and supporting people with active TB disease and TB infection is essential to stopping the spread of the disease. To help achieve this, the Government of Canada provides nursing, medical, epidemiological, laboratory and operational support for TB outbreak response and community-wide screenings in Inuit and First Nations communities. We recently collaborated with the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. in a successful community-wide TB screening clinic in Pangnirtung, Nunavut. These efforts led to the screening of 94% of the target population. A similar collaboration is currently taking place for the coordination of another community-wide screening in Naujaat, Nunavut. Activities on the ground are expected to begin in mid-April and continue until the end of May.

We are also funding vital research into TB through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). CIHR is supporting the tuberculosis prevention work of Dr. Gonzalo Alvarez and the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute through the Taima TB (“Stop TB”) Initiative. Working with frontline health care providers, nurses, government officials and Inuit communities in Nunavut, Dr. Alvarez and his team are conducting a new wastewater study in Iqaluit. The study will assess the use of wastewater monitoring to detect TB earlier and with more accuracy and help prevent its spread in communities.

We dedicate ourselves to this important work so that everyone has equitable access to healthcare services while upholding human rights, promoting gender equality, and nurturing an inclusive and discrimination-free healthcare system. Part of that involves improving access to TB prevention, care and treatment, and reducing stigma and discrimination.

By working to champion collaborative action to address the underlying risk factors for TB and ensure our responses are grounded in scientific evidence, community-based knowledge and best practices, Yes! We can end TB!

Visit to learn more about TB.

The Honourable Mark Holland, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Health

The Honourable Patty Hajdu, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Indigenous Services Canada

The Honourable Dan Vandal, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Northern Affairs, PrairiesCan and CanNor


Christopher Aoun
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Mark Holland
Minister of Health

Jennifer Kozelj
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for FedNor

Carson Debert
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Dan Vandal
Minister of Northern Affairs, PrairiesCan and CanNor

Media Relations
Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada

Media Relations
Indigenous Services Canada

Media Relations
Crown−Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada


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