Ntungamo District has been selected to host this year’s commemoration of World Tuberculosis Day this month.
World Tuberculosis Day, observed on 24 March each year, is designed to build public awareness about the global epidemic of tuberculosis(TB) and efforts to eliminate the disease.
Tuberculosis is an infection airborne disease caused by a germ and is transmitted through air from a TB patient mainly through coughing, talking, singing, sneezing without covering the nose and mouth.
In Uganda, TB kills 20-30 people per day, 39 per cent of people with TB symptom do not seek care, every 4 out of 10 Ugandans with TB are not identified and 53 per cent of households affected by TB spend more than 20 per cent of their annual income on TB hence TB is a driver of poverty since it reduces capacity of household work.
The National celebrations will be held at Ruhaama sub county headquarters grounds in Ruhaama county Ntungamo district under the theme” It’s time for Uganda to end TB: it starts with me”.
Speaking to the consultative meeting in preparation for the day in District council hall yesterday, the Ntungamo District Health officer Dr Bakamuturaki Richard revealed that 15 per cent of TB patients who start treatment don’t complete treatment saying that Ntungamo district is one of the high burdened districts in south Western region.
He decried that if increased cases of multi-drug resistant (MDR) of TB are not checked, children are more likely to get the disease if exposed to someone with it.
The Ntungamo district woman MP who is also on parliamentary committee of health Beatrice Rwakimaari welcomed the celebrations saying that it will create public awareness about the devastating health, social and economic consequences of TB, and to step up efforts to end the TB epidemic in the district and region at large.
According to statistics from July 2017-June 2018, 56 per cent of people are diagnosed with TB in the district but few turned up for treatment at health centers.