100% coverage of TB treatment strategy achieved


The government has achieved 100 percent coverage of Directly Observed Treatment Short-course (DOTS) strategy for the detection and cure of tuberculosis in the country. According to official sources, the treatment is recommended by World Health Organization (WHO) and more than 700,000 tuberculosis patients were treated free of cost in the country through this strategy. They said that the government had set up around 982 microscopy centres throughout the country to provide a free of cost diagnostic facility to tuberculosis’ patients. They said that external quality assurance for sputum microscopy was implemented in 40 districts of the country, while five reference laboratories have been established included one at the federal level and one each at provincial levels. They said that training and health education materials have been developed and all concerned health care providers have been trained. They said that TB is an infectious bacterial disease caused by Mycobacterium Tuberculosis, which most commonly affects lungs. They added that the disease was transmitted from person to person via droplets from the throat and lungs of people with the active respiratory disease. They said that in healthy people, an infection with Mycobacterium Tuberculosis often causes no symptoms, since the person’s immune system walls off the bacteria. They said that symptoms of active TB of the lungs are coughing, sometimes with sputum or blood, chest pains, weakness, weight loss, fever and night sweats.