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World Tuberculosis Day: 26L people get TB in India each year, study finds: The Tribune India

Tribune press service

PK Jaiswar

Amritsar, March 24

Even though the Union government has launched various programs to free the country from tuberculosis, the fight is far from over.

Reason: Delay in arrival of patients in hospitals and delayed start of treatment and patients leaving treatment halfway.

The government has been striving to make the country TB-free by 2025 and it is running a national TB eradication program and has adopted a detection, treatment, prevention and construction strategy.

“The need of the hour is to reach the maximum number of people, identify patients and check their drug resistance under the universal drug susceptibility test, in addition to ensuring the early arrival and completion of each patient’s treatment,” said Dr Naresh Chawla, a former district tuberculosis officer and renowned pulmonologist.

He said, “We need to adopt an intensified case-finding method and an active case-finding method. The government should visit slums, brick kilns, tribal areas and high-risk populations to identify new patients. By doing so, we can control the spread of the disease to 10 new people.

Sharing some data, he pointed out that about a quarter of TB patients globally are from India. He said about 100 lakh new patients are identified globally every year and about 15 lakh patients have died from the disease. He said that in India every year 26 million people contract the disease and around 1,000 patients die from it daily.

He said that despite all the efforts of the government, the disease has spread in the country like an epidemic. He said that every year, World Tuberculosis Day is celebrated around the world on March 24 to raise awareness of the disease that strikes low- and middle-income countries.

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