National Geographic : 2002 Feb
costly to cure and kills many who have no access to mod ern medical facilities. Until their treatment takes hold, TB patients have little contact with healthy prison ers like Grigory Morozov, saying good-bye to his wife, Olga (right), after a conjugal visit. "Of course I'm worried about getting TB and passing it on to my daughter," says Olga. "I get tested every "TB can become drug-resistant in prisons, when inmates fail to take all their medicine or when they're released before completing treatment." - PHOTOGRAPHER KAREN KASMAUSKI three months, and so far I'm fine." Tuberculosis is more likely to be spread by the prisoners themselves if they are released while still con tagious. No longer quaran tined or compelled to take their medicine, they are likely to infect an average of ten to fifteen new victims a year. With one-third of humanity now carriers of tuberculosis, the disease has become everyone's problem. Each year the U.S. Public Health Service screens the estimated 200,000 people caught trying to enter the country illegally, including a man being x-rayed in El Centro, Califor nia (above left). Some two million more cross the border undetected-and untested.