Durban — The World Health Organisation says Tuberculosis (TB) is still one of the world’s top infectious killers. It says annually more than 10 million people fall sick with TB and over 1 million die.
Moreover, the organisation added that drug resistant TB continues to be a major contributor to antimicrobial resistance with close to half a million people developing drug-resistant TB every year.
Furthermore, in a recent high meeting on TB World leaders at the United Nations General Assembly approved a political declaration with ambitious new targets for the next five years to advance the global efforts towards ending the TB epidemic.
“The targets include reaching 90% of people with TB prevention and care services, using a WHO-recommended rapid test as the first method of diagnosing TB; providing social benefit packages to all people with TB; licensing at least one new TB vaccine; and closing funding gaps for TB implementation and research by 2027,” said WHO.
The director of the WHO Global TB Programme Dr Tereza Kasaeva, said uniting around the TB response by world leaders for the second time provides an opportunity to accelerate action and strengthen health systems capable of not only addressing the TB epidemic, but also protecting the broader health and well‑being of communities.
“Strengthening pandemic preparedness and building on lessons learnt during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Averting TB-related financial hardship and preventing the development of the disease in vulnerable groups will help diminish inequities within and between countries, contributing to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals,” said Dr Kasaeva.
Moreover, WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, officially launched the TB vaccine accelerator council to facilitate the development, licensing and use of new TB vaccines.
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