World TB Day
World TB Day

Did you know that Monday 24 March was World TB Day? It’s worth remembering, because more than 8 million people around the world develop TB each year, and more than 1 million people die of it. Eighty-eight percent of the world’s TB cases occur in 22 “high burden countries” which are, not surprisingly, mostly among the world’s poorest. In Nepal, 45% of total population is infected with TB; 40,000 people get TB every year, and 20,000 new sputum positive cases are identified every year. 5000-7000 people die each year from TB.

UMN has been involved with TB treatment for many years, through its hospitals and community health projects. From 1994 to 2003, UMN provided secondees to the national TB Net Support Programme. UMN’s Yala Urban Health Programme pioneered the DOTS (Directly Observed Treatment System) method of treating TB. These days, people living with HIV and AIDS are particularly susceptible to TB, so Community Home-Based Carers are trained to recognise its symptoms and ensure patients get appropriate treatment.

Our two hospitals continue to treat TB patients. Okhaldhunga Community Hospital has just opened its brand new TB ward, which means it can keep infectious cases away from other vulnerable patients. And on World TB Day, United Mission Hospital Tansen was proud to receive a Dixa-Daxa Appreciation Letter from the National Tuberculosis Centre, for its DOTS service, and for regularly participating in the National TB Programme.

Congratulations to both hospitals!

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