More people die from TB today than ever before -- 1.4 million people each year, according to the World Health Organization. Part of the reason is that TB is still diagnosed in most parts of the world using a method invented in the late 19th century.
In order to ensure that new tools are developed and today's treatments are provided, governments must prioritize tuberculosis as a public health priority and close the projected gaps in domestic and international funding.
For a government that spends $1.9 billion every single day on the military, Washington's unwillingness to follow through on a $1.33 billion pledge to the Global Fund to save millions of lives is a new depth of cynicism and recklessness.
You don't need to look far to find real examples of pandemics and their huge tolls. But some of the deadliest diseases wouldn't be considered the least bit exotic by Hollywood screenwriters or even average Angelenos.
Are we confident that U.S. leadership on HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis will acknowledge the evidence about what is possible and rise to this challenge? Will President Obama heed Archbishop Tutu's call to action and do his part to end AIDS?