AHF Nigeria advocates end to tuberculosis.

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By Ijeoma Obioma.

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Nigeria on Sunday advocated an end to tuberculosis as the world marks this World Tuberculosis (TB) Day.

Steve Aborisade, Advocacy & Marketing Manager, AHF Nigeria, said the organisation aimed on this day to raise awareness of one of the world’s deadliest infectious diseases that is the leading cause of death for people living with HIV, yet 100% preventable and treatable.

“AHF Nigeria in partnership with other stakeholders, particularly the TB programs in our state of operation – Abuja-FCT, Benue, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Cross River, Kogi and Nasarawa states – are saying ‘Yes! We Can End TB’.

“Across these states, we will be honouring the millions of lives lost to TB while urging leaders at all levels of government to prioritize TB prevention and treatment efforts.

“Through dedicated radio awareness effort, AHF Nigeria with officials from the office of TB focal persons in these states shall be educating the public on TB prevention and creating awareness about the availability of free TB treatment, across Nigeria.

“Through this effort, all the TB Directly Observed Therapy (DOT) centers across AHF Nigeria states of operations shall be popularized so that people can be aware of where to seek help for TB treatment and be knowledgeable about identifying cases and referring them to care and treatment,” he said.

Also, Dr. Echey Ijezie, AHF Nigeria Country Program Director, said, “It is important for stakeholders to create greater awareness about TB and ensure that people get tested for TB and HIV.

“TB is treatable while the treatment is quite accessible and free across Nigeria. It is in this regard that AHF Nigeria is happy to contribute to the existing efforts of the Nigerian TB program through awareness creation and driving greater community involvement and participation through the strategic engagement of community-based organizations (CBOs) and their civil society (CSOs) counterparts.”

He posited that according to the World Health Organization, TB claimed 1.3 million lives in 2022, including 167,000 people living with HIV, with an estimated nearly 11 million people falling ill to TB worldwide.

Adding that, Multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) remains a public health crisis and a health security threat, yet only about 2 in 5 people with MDR-TB accessed treatment in 2022. Global efforts to combat TB have saved an estimated 75 million lives since 2000.

Meanwhile, the World TB Day is recognized annually on March 24.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is a global non-profit organization providing cutting-edge medicine and advocacy to over 1.9 million people in 46 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific Region, and Europe. AHF is currently the largest non-profit provider of HIV/AIDS medical care in the world.

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