TUBERCULOSIS cases on the Isle of Wight increased slightly despite falling overall in the region.
Figures published yesterday (Tuesday) in Public Health England's annual report revealed there were seven cases of TB per 100,000 people on the Island in 2012, compared with six in 2011.
In the Wessex region, which is made up of Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and Dorset, individual cases fell from 189 in 2011, to 171 in 2012. That represented an overall rate of 6.5 cases per 100,000, compared to the national average of 14.
Portsmouth and Southampton recorded some of the the highest numbers of cases in the region with 23 and 39 respectively, though in Southampton cases fell from 51 in 2011.
The Island had more cases of the disease than some areas in the Wessex region, including north and east Dorset and east Hampshire.
The report showed that rates of TB had stabilised nationally, following an increase in cases over the last two decades. UK rates remained high for western European countries however.
Dr Jim O’Brien, Wessex Public Health England Centre director, said: "TB is a preventable and treatable condition but, if left untreated, it can be life threatening. Efforts to control the spread of this infection must remain a public health priority.
"Early diagnosis and appropriate treatment are key to reducing TB levels in the UK so we encourage local health service commissioners to prioritise the delivery of appropriate clinical and public health services for TB, especially in areas where TB rates are highest."