ED commits to fight Tuberculosis

by Anesu Pedzisayi

In an effort to address challenges posed by Tuberculosis (TB) in Zimbabwe, Government has committed to ensuring investment and comprehensive economic and social programmes aimed at ending the scourge and reducing costs in accessing TB treatment by 2030.

Addressing delegates attending a High-Level Meeting on the fight against Tuberculosis in New York, USA, on the side-lines of the 73rd United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) summit, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said there was need for collectiveness in developing countries to fight the disease.

 “It is disturbing that the disease has become one of the leading causes of death in many developing countries, hence our collective commitment to end this scourge by 2030 is imperative given that Tuberculosis is a preventable and treatable disease,” said President Mnangagwa.

President Mnangagwa said Government had put in place measures to address challenges associated with TB, with education awareness programmes leading to the significant decline of the disease in the country.

“My country has put in place various strategies to address challenges   associated with TB, which include TB control, better case detection, prevention and management, as well as the integration of TB/HIV co-infection health services delivery.

“The follow-up system has been strengthened, while TB community campaigns and education programmes continue to be intensified. These measures have led to a significant reduction in the TB prevalence rate over the years,” he said.

President Mnangagwa also said Government would channel investments programmes towards TB, and invited stakeholders and other interested partners across the globe to work with Zimbabwe.

 “My Government will continue to broaden the accessibility and affordability of interventions to reach all susceptible populations and address drug-resistant TB. As my country modernises and revamps the health delivery system, we will in turn ensure investments and comprehensive economic and social programmes which address the challenges posed by TB.

“Zimbabwe stands ready to work with co-operating partners and other stakeholders to accelerate efforts towards ending TB within the regional, continental and global context,” he said.

United Nations Sustainable Development Goal Number Three targets a 90 percent reduction in TB deaths, 80 percent reduction in TB incidence rate, and ensuring all TB affected families are no longer facing exorbitant costs in accessing TB treatment by 2030.