24th March: World Tuberculosis Day
World Tuberculosis Day is observed on 24th March every year. The World Health Organization’s report [www.who.int/campaigns/world-tb-day/world-tb-day-2021] makes us acutely aware that Tuberculosis is one of the world’s deadliest diseases that can lead to death. It also reports that every day, almost 4000 people die from this disease. It observes this day to raise awareness about the health, social, and economic implications of tuberculosis.
The theme for 2021 is “The Clock is ticking”. The world is at the end of its rope in terms of interventions to end tuberculosis. This is truer in the context of COVID-19, which has further jeopardized progress in research and access to equitable healthcare.
What is immensely positive is that our healthcare professionals, have worked to save 63 million people affected by tuberculosis from 2000 to date.
Health professionals are well aware of the complications surrounding the treatment of drug-resistant tuberculosis. However, technology has been of help, particularly in the past decade. This has been possible with the advent of new strategies like rapid molecular tests. Community-wide screening with portable radiography was a known treatment procedure in the pre-antibiotic era. However, for success in the current context, the focus is on holistic patient-driven solutions. Tuberculosis patients, particularly those with the multidrug-resistant variant of the disease, go through long and exhausting healthcare regimes. Interventions that look at their diet, social support, mental well-being, and lifestyle management, can make a big difference.
On the occasion of this day, we aim to honor the work of our healthcare professionals who have put in endless hours to aid people suffering from tuberculosis. This includes interventions even during a raging pandemic. We bring you a link to resources on tuberculosis to celebrate and further your efforts in eliminating this disease.
From QMed: Recent articles on tuberculosis – systematic reviews and reviews