Prior to immigrating to the U.S., Rose and her husband were hardworking farmers in the Philippines, raising 7 children.  Rose cared for her husband when he developed pulmonary TB twice.  She and her children encouraged him to stop smoking, eat healthy foods, and seek treatment from the local hospital. Her involvement with his care led Rose to become a volunteer health worker and help other TB patients stand up to stigma of TB.

In Rose's words...

Because of my husband’s illness with TB, I volunteered for 23 years as a health care worker until I came to the United States.

In the Philippines, you are not supposed to say you have a TB because you are shunned by the community. So, if your family has TB, you don’t tell anybody. It is a secret. Because once you tell them, the people believe others will not come to your place or they will not be near you because they are afraid they will be affected by TB.
I am not ashamed of telling everyone about my husband’s TB so that other people will be given the chance to get help.

If you have TB don’t be afraid. You should not be embarrassed to say that they have tuberculosis because tuberculosis today is quickly treated.

Rose, Snohomish County