The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.

Increasing number of tuberculosis patients in Afghanistan

Afghanistan Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has said that the number of tuberculosis patients mostly women has increased in the country. In an interview with The Kabul Times correspondent, Dr. Sharafat Zaman said that based on the World Health Organization report, nearly 75,000 Afghans were infected with tuberculosis in Afghanistan each year with 56 percent women and 44 percent children and aged people.
“The number of TB patients has unfortunately increased by 3 percent during 2022 comparing to 2021,” Dr. Zaman said, adding that currently, 850 health centers were operating in 34 provinces of the country to treat patients with tuberculosis. According to the country’s ministry of public health, there are TB labs to diagnose
TB in most of the provinces and Increasing number of tuberculosis patients in Afghanistan necessary facilitations have been also provided for TB patients. Meanwhile, Prof. Dr. Fayaz Safi told The Kabul Times correspondent that those having a weak immune system and suffering from other chronic diseases are more likely to be infected with tuberculosis. According to Dr. Safi, feelings of sickness or weakness, weight loss, fever, and night sweats as well as coughing, chest pain, and the coughing up of blood are some general symptoms of TB disease. On the occasion of TB World Day marked each year on 24th March, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) called on governments and donors to speed up access to new, shorter, safer and more effective treatments for drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB), as well as the diagnostic tests needed to implement the new treatment regimens. MSF, translated as Doctors Without Borders, joined the World Health Organization (WHO) and other actors in a ‘Call to Action’ ahead of World TB Day. MSF also urged the
US-based diagnostics corporation Cepheid to drop the price of the critical GeneXpert tests to ensure that people with DRTB can be diagnosed in time to access the shorter and safer treatment regimens. In Afghanistan, MSF Medical Coordinator, Dr. Geke Huisman by pointing to challenging facing TB patients in the country said: “In a country like Afghanistan, where people are struggling to afford basic food items, travel expenses and medical fees for hospital, being able to treat people with drug-resistant TB within 6 months instead of up to two years with the older treatment regimens would be a blessing.” According to Geke, access to affordable diagnostic tests remains a major challenge in Afghanistan and other countries in this region because of the high prices of tests, asking governments, donors and pharmaceutical corporations to act to ensure an affordable supply of these critical tests and treatments for TB, so that more lives can be saved. Polluted air, living of many people in small rooms and the weakness of the human body’s defense power are considered to be the reasons due to which tuberculosis, which is a contagious disease, is quickly transmitted from one person to another. Tuberculosis is still one of the diseases that kill many people in the world. TB treatment centers show that every 22 seconds a patient dies of tuberculosis.

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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.