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June 21, 1965

Tuberculosis Mortality in the United States, 1900 to 1960

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle.

JAMA. 1965;192(12):1045-1048. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080250023005

Tuberculosis mortality in the United States has undergone a progressive decline during the past century. Decreases in mortality rates among whites and nonwhites have been of similar magnitude, but nonwhite death rates have remained two to three times higher than white death rates. Mortality has generally been higher in males than in females, and the male-female ratio of deaths has risen steadily. Age distribution of fatal cases has changed, from infants, young adults, and the elderly, to the elderly alone. Past progress foreshadows eventual eradication of tuberculosis in the United States, especially if public health, social, economic, and educational measures are directed towards groups at greatest risk.