Washington county has some of the highest TB rates in the U.S.

Tuberculosis infection rates in King County, Washington, were recently found to be among the highest in the United States.

Public Health Seattle and King County said that they believed the rates to be high because of the region’s status as a global crossroads and the nature of the worldwide epidemic, according to

The organization's 2010 TB report indicate that there were 114 active cases of TB identified in 2010 and that health services provided treatment and evaluation to more than 1,100 people with either active or latent TB.

One in five patients treated for active TB in the area are thought to have been identified as being resistant to at least one medication. At least two people had multi-drug resistant infections.

“TB control is an essential investment in the health of our communities that helps us fight the local effects of this global disease," Dr. David Fleming, the director and health officer for Public Health Seattle and King County, said, reports. "In these difficult budget times, state funding support for this work is now threatened, but we can't afford to let down our guard."

Public Health Seattle and King County said that recent cuts to funding will threaten its ability to provide core services, including TB control.

At 5.9 infections for every 100,000 people, the TB rate in King County is 1.5 times the national average in the United States. Eighty-four percent of the infected individuals were born outside of the United States.