Special drive to tackle TB launched

A target has been set to cover 3,21,221 people in Dharwad district

Deputy Commissioner M. Deepa launched at a function here on Monday a special drive to trace and treat tuberculosis patients in Dharwad district.

Ms. Deepa said that the main objective of this drive is to identify those with tuberculosis and provide them medication. This apart, the drive would focus on creating a greater amount of awareness among the public and dispel certain myths associated with the disease.

She said that tuberculosis could be cured completely if medication is received and proper care is taken as prescribed by doctors. The treatment is for a longer duration but the State government has arranged for free medication and also stipend will be given to patients during the period of treatment.

This arrangement has been made to ensure that patients do not discontinue treatment. The officials have set a target of covering 3,21,221 people located in different areas. Special focus would be given to cover patients residing in slums, truck terminals, schools, colleges and other such places, she said.

Dharwad Zilla Panchayat Chief Executive Officer B.C. Satish said that this special drive will be carried out in the district till December 10. The Department of Health and Family Welfare has made elaborate arrangements to ensure the success of the drive. It has roped in voluntary and service organisations for this purpose. This drive would be held under the TB Control programme of the Union government that has set a larger target of making India TB free by 2025. The public should benefit from this drive, he said.

District TB Control officer Tanuja K.N. said that a total of 1,835 patients are receiving treatment for TB in the district. There are eight TB testing centres in the district. Every month, an average of 1,500 people are tested for TB. Efforts would be made to cover the maximum number of people under this special drive. A total of 284 teams comprising 568 persons, including staff of government departments, those from non-government organisations and others, have been pressed into work, she said.

District Health and Family Welfare officer Yashwant Madinkar said that the government has launched several programmes to combat tuberculosis and support patients. Besides providing free treatment, the government provides monthly financial assistance of ₹ 500 during the period of treatment under the Nikshay Poshane Scheme. The Health and Family Welfare Department has set up a toll free helpline Ph: 104 to obtain any information related to TB, he said.

Students from different educational institutions, members of the voluntary organisations and others were present.

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