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Category: Infectious Diseases
Tropical disease experts called for policy makers to focus resources on often-ignored, easily-cured and preventable diseases in the U.S.
These diseases, such as cytomegalovirus (CMV) and dengue fever, are often associated with Third World and tropical areas, but need to be addressed in the U.S., according to the researchers and doctors present.
The meeting, which took place at the Adler School's Institute on Social Exclusion in Chicago, focused on the challenge of what are termed Neglected Infections of Poverty (NIPs).
"These infections of poverty are overlooked in this country, and the conference could well be the first step towards building the momentum necessary to adequately address these diseases," said Marian McDonald, of the CDC's National Center for Preparedness, Detection & Control.
Conference participants called for greater active surveillance of diseases like CMV, which many hospitals are not equipped to test for.
The CDC estimates that between 50 and 80 percent of adults in the U.S. are infected with CMV by age 40. CMV is the most common virus transmitted to a child from its pregnant mother, and approximately 1 in 750 children is born with or develops permanent disabilities due to CMV. Some people choose to get tested for the virus in order to check their status.
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