Aisha Buhari Seeks Stronger Partnership, Alliance To End Tuberculosis
The Wife of the president,and Nigeria’s first lady,Mrs Aisha Buhari has called for stronger partnership and alliance to end Tuberculosis in the country.
Mrs Buhari who made the call in Abuja at the opening of a two-day National Tuberculosis Conference with the theme “Building Stronger Partnership to End TB in Nigeria” .
Mrs Buhari who was represented by Chief of Staff to the First Lady, Dr Hajo Sani observed that about 600,000 thousand people become infected with Tuberculosis every year in Nigeria.
“Also Tuberculosis is the most common cause of death in person living with HIV/AIDs and children with the emergence of drug resistance TB, it is also not acceptable that Nigeria is having the lowest TB case detection rate in the world as it is currently detecting 25% of TB cases and with over 170,000 Nigerians dying annually from preventable and curable disease.”
” Approximately it is projected that up to 60,000 of new cases affect children. Nigeria currently have the highest number of Turberculosis cases in Africa and the six highest in the world.”
According to Mrs Buhari the conference is taking place at a very important time when Nigeria needs to pay attention to the issue of Tuberculosis as it has now becomes the number one infectious disease killer in the world.
She urged all stakeholders, electives and appointees, CSOs, Academia religious and traditional institutions and the media to work more together to end TB in Nigeria.
“I promise to,engage all the first ladies in the 36 states as TB champions in their respective states , we have started this in Lagos with Dr Mrs Adejoke Sanwolu as the TB Champion for Lagos state.”
On his part,the Permanent Secretary, ministry of Health,Alhaji Abdullahi Mashi, said the 2018 WHO TB Report showed that Nigeria has the highest number of cases in Africa and sixth highest globally.
The permanent Secretary who was represented by the Director of Public Health FMOH, Dr Evelyn Ngige, noted that TB remains one of the major public health challenges in the country.
“Tuberculosis is a major public health challenge in Nigeria. Nigeria has the highest TB burden in Africa and 6th in the world. The working-age group of Nigeria is most affected by the disease.”
“Seventy-one per cent of TB patients and households in the country are affected by catastrophic cost due to TB; over 120,000 Nigerians die annually from TB.”
Also speaking, the Board Chairman, Stop TB Partnership Nigeria, organisers of the conference,Prof. Lovett Lawson noted that the conference was to bring key stakeholders to foster access to research, technologies and innovations in TB control.
The Director, Centre for Global Health , Dr Rebecca Martins, said there was the need to set goals to diagnose and treat 22million people by 2022.
“We can meet these numbers. It is a challenge but it can be met. To do this, we must address the spread of TB and MDRTB- “she said
“Nigeria has quality programs and a workforce at state and LGA levels to support the federal government. Nigeria has the key components to achieve global TB targets”