HEALTH:Ghana to commemorate World TB Day on Saturday
Ghana will on Saturday, March 24, join the world to commemorate this year’s World TB Day on the theme: “Call for a World Free of TB”.
The “Day” which will be held in Accra, will witness a year-long chain of activities including radio programmes and launch “Kick TB out of Ghana” using children as communication tools to effect change and use them to practice cough etiquette.
A release issued and signed by Dr Frank Bonsu, National TB Control Programme Manager copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the theme called on people from all over the world to make an individual call to stop TB in their lifetimes.
It called on men, women and children to hope for a world with zero deaths from TB, faster treatment, effective vaccine and a world free of TB.
“Ghana as a country, is taking strides to Stop TB. Tuberculosis (TB) control in Ghana has seen an unprecedented increase in detected cases and successful treatment of TB patients over the past five years. Globally, the WHO estimates that 85 per cent of all new infectious TB cases detected have been treated successfully.”
The release noted that Ghana had achieved this target noting that in 2006, Ghana successfully treated 76.1 per cent of all infected TB cases detected and this had increased to 85.3 per cent in 2010.
It explained that reported TB cases had seen an increase nationwide.
Ghana has recorded an increased number of TB cases with 12,511 in 2007 and a peak of 15,842 in 2011 with 2010 recording 15,067 as against 14,479 in 2008 and 12,963 in 2007. These successes have been achieved by a combined effort of all stakeholders in the health sector.
It said TB treatment was free from the day of diagnosis till treatment was completed. Standard Treatment of TB lasts for six months unless in special complicated cases when the doctor might extent treatment duration. TB is curable.
“A patient on treatment becomes non- infective in two weeks and cannot spread the disease but needs to complete the six months treatment to avoid developing resistance. Thus patients on treatment are not dangerous and should not be stigmatised”.
The release noted that TB affected every facet of lives putting everybody at risk, adding “Every breath counts and an ounce of information is a step toward cure”.
TB is a curable disease that is spread through air through coughing, sneezing, shouting or singing. If you experience a cough for more than two weeks, weight loss, excessive night sweat you must report to the nearest health facility for investigation.
If it is not diagnosed as TB, it could be any other lung disease like asthma, bronchitis or pneumonia that needs to be treated.