New South Wales Public Health Bulletin New South Wales Public Health Bulletin Society
Supporting public health practice in New South Wales

Tuberculosis in NSW, 2009–2011

Chris Lowbridge A B , Amanda Christensen A and Jeremy M. McAnulty A

A Health Protection NSW

B Corresponding author. Email:

NSW Public Health Bulletin 24(1) 3-9
Published: 15 July 2013


Aim: To describe the epidemiology of tuberculosis in NSW between 2009 and 2011 and compare with previous years. Methods: Data from all cases of tuberculosis notified in NSW during this period were extracted from the Notifiable Conditions Information Management System. Descriptive analyses of notification data were undertaken. Incidence rates were calculated per 100 000 population. Results: Between 2009 and 2011, there were 1548 cases of tuberculosis notified in NSW, translating to an average annual notification rate of 7.2 per 100 000 population for this period. A total of 89% (n = 1371) of notified cases were overseas-born, and 1.6% (n = 24) of cases were recorded as Aboriginal persons. The most common site of infection was the lung (60% of cases). Of notified cases, 68% were reported as having been tested for HIV, of which 3% (n = 28) of cases had HIV/tuberculosis co-infection. There were 20 cases of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis, including one case of extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis. Conclusion: The notification rate of tuberculosis in NSW has remained relatively stable over the past two decades, though small incremental increases since 2003 are evident. Endemic transmission of tuberculosis within sub-groups of the NSW population, as well as the ongoing high endemnicity for tuberculosis in neighbouring countries, highlight the importance of tuberculosis control as a continued strategic priority for disease control in NSW.


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