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The Covid-19 pandemic reduced TB health care by 21% in 2020: WHO

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According to preliminary data collected by the World Health Organization (WHO) from more than 80 countries, the coronavirus pandemic reduced TB care by 21% in 2020.

Multilateral organizations said that in 2020, an estimated 1.4 million people would be treated for tuberculosis (TB) than in 2019.

The countries with the largest relative gaps were Indonesia (42%), South Africa (41%), the Philippines (37%), and India (25%).

“The effects of Covid-19 go far beyond the deaths and illnesses caused by the virus itself. The disruption of essential services for tuberculosis patients is disproportionate to the poorest people in the world whose pandemics are already at high risk of tuberculosis. It’s just one of the tragic examples affecting the disease, “said WHO Executive Director Tedros Adanom Gebreyes.

“These cool data need to make universal health an important priority as the country recovers in response to a pandemic to ensure access to services essential to tuberculosis and all illnesses. It shows that. “

WHO fears that more than 500,000 people may have died of tuberculosis in 2020 just because they were not diagnosed.

We believe that one way to address this issue is to restore and improve TB screening to quickly identify people with TB infection or disease.

New guidance issued by WHO on World Tuberculosis Day will help countries identify specific needs of their communities, populations at highest risk of tuberculosis, where they are most affected, and give people access to the most appropriate prevention and care services. The purpose is to.

This can be achieved by using a more systematic screening approach that uses new tools. According to WHO, the recommendations come with an operational guide to facilitate deployment.

In 2020, the UN Secretary-General announced a set of 10 priority recommendations that countries must follow. These include activating high levels of leadership and action across multiple sectors to urgently reduce TB deaths. Increased funding; promotion of universal health insurance for tuberculosis prevention and care. Efforts for drug resistance, promotion of human rights, strengthening of tuberculosis research.

“For centuries, tuberculosis patients have been one of the most marginalized and vulnerable people. COVID-19 has widened the gap in living conditions and ability to access services, both domestically and internationally.” Said Dr. Terezaka Saeva, director of WHO’s Global Tuberculosis Program.

“We now have to make new efforts to work together to ensure that the tuberculosis program is powerful enough to provide in future emergencies-and an innovative way to do this. “Look for,” added Casaeva.

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