Many tuberculosis patients and people with consistent cough that lasted for months in Bauch State have continued to shun hospitals for fear of being quarantined for COVID-19.
Th executive secretary, Bauchi State Agency for the Control of HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Leprosy and Malaria (BACATMA), Dr Sani Muhammad Damba, disclosed this to newsmen during the commemoration of World Tuberculosis Day in Bauchi.
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Dr Dambam explained that after emergence of COVID-19, many people were afraid to report suspected tuberculosis cases to treatment centres in the state out of the fear that it might be a adjudged to be the dreaded COVID-19.
He said that despite the pandemic, the agency had continued to treat its patients across the state.
“In 2020, Bauchi State recorded 4,430 drug- susceptible tuberculosis cases, adding that 93 per cent of cases were treated successfully,” he said.
He lamented that the COVID-19 pandemic had shifted attention of global health care providers and donors from tuberculosis, thereby creating an unfavourable condition in the fight against the bacteria.
He also revealed that the agency had recorded tremendous breakthroughs in terms of control of tuberculosis across all the 20 local governments areas of the state, adding that BACATMA runs 570 free treatment centres in the state, in addition to 127 diagnostic centres.
He also revealed that the agency had recorded tremendous breakthroughs in terms of control of tuberculosis across all the 20 local governments areas of the state, adding that the BACATMA runs 570 free treatment centres in the state, in addition to 127 diagnostic centres.
“The BACATMA has procured 12 GeneXpert machines for treating both drug-sensitive tuberculosis bacteria and drug resistant variant of the bacteria responsible causing multi-drug resistant form of the disease. The BACATMA is harnessing resources to create the “needed effort to reach those at highest risk of tuberculosis and to identify and implement innovative strategies to improve testing and treatment among high risk populations,” he said.