Plateau govt concerned over TB outbreak

Commissioner for Health in Plateau State, Dr Nimkong Ndam, on Friday expressed worry over the rise in cases of Tuberculosis (TB) in the state.

Mr Ndam spoke at a sensitisation and screening to mark the 2023 World Tuberculosis Day, in Gyel, Jos South Local Government Area.

Represented by the Director of Public Health, Dr Mafwalal Masok, Ndam said that 219 out of 100,000 persons in the state suffered from TB.

He said that in 2022, the state recorded 10,000 cases of TB.

”So, the aim of this exercise is to create awareness and intensify TB case finding in the state.

”We are putting people who are vulnerable to developing active TB on preventive treatment.

”This will prevent community spreading. Every undiagnosed and untreated case is capable of  infecting 15 people within a year.

”During the exercise, detected cases will be promptly placed on treatment, this will address the issue of low TB case finding,” he said.

Earlier, Dr Catherine Igoh, the State Coordinator, Breakthrough Action Nigeria, an NGO, said the exercise was to raise TB awareness through community outreach.

Ms Igoh also expressed worry that TB, a preventable and curable disease, could lead to several deaths and disabilities.

She urged the opeople experiencing weight loss and prolonged coughing to immediately go for testing.

”The treatment for TB is absolutely free. We urge people to take advantage of available opportunities,” he said.

Also speaking, Professor Chudung Miner, the Chairman, Association of Public Health Physicians, Plateau chapter, identified poor waste management as a major cause of the disease.

She said that overpopulation and poor immunity were other factors that led to the rise in TB cases in Plateau.

The World Tuberculosis Day is globally commemorated annually on March 24.

The theme for 2023 edition of the Day is: “Yes, We Can End TB!”