A New Edge To The Fight Against Tuberculosis
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi put new vigour into global tuberculosis (TB) elimination response at the One World TB Summit in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh on March 24, 2023, and reiterated India’s resolve to spearhead this effort.
- Mr Modi also underlined the necessity of innovation and the need to “find new ways and formulate new strategies” to attain the desired results. The Prime Minister’s statements are crucial as we seek to reinvent India’s and the world’s TB response, with innovation and research serving as key change agents.
Points to Ponder:
- During the One World TB Summit, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi emphasised the importance of innovation and the need for new tactics to eradicate tuberculosis (TB).
- The COVID-19 response demonstrates that humans can overcome unparalleled adversity via invention, experimentation, and adaptation. In recent years, India has understood the need of investing in health research and development. The Mission COVID Suraksha vaccine development programme was an excellent example of a public-private partnership with clear aims and outcomes. The large number of diagnostic tests created and the variety of vaccination platforms demonstrate that our manufacturing sector is resilient and scalable.
- The National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme in India has implemented various strategies to detect, notify, and treat TB cases, but widespread knowledge and access to excellent care remain challenges.
- To solve this issue, India must implement novel ideas and instruments for TB prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
- The article suggests prioritising TB vaccine studies, making it easier and less expensive to screen for and diagnose TB, finding new treatment compounds, and implementing appropriate policy frameworks.
- Harmonisation of standards and regulatory processes between countries can allow for mutual recognition of evidence-based standards and licences, saving vital time in the rollout process.
- With its G-20 leadership, India has the opportunity to construct a global health architecture that ensures fair access for everyone.
- Innovative ideas and new instruments are vital to attaining the objective of eliminating tuberculosis, and India, with its pioneering spirit and scientific ingenuity, can lead the way.
Preventive measures for TB
Tuberculosis (TB) is a widespread infectious illness caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Here are some measures to lower your risk of tuberculosis:
- Vaccination: The BCG (Bacillus Calmette-Guérin) vaccination is the most regularly used TB vaccine. Many countries, including India, provide it to infants. This vaccination can protect children from severe types of tuberculosis, but its effectiveness in adults is limited.
- Proper ventilation: Because tuberculosis spreads through the air, overcrowding and poor ventilation can increase the risk of transmission. Proper ventilation of living and working areas can help to lower the risk of tuberculosis infection.
- Good hygiene: Because tuberculosis is spread through coughing and sneezing, it is critical to cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or handkerchief while coughing or sneezing. Proper hand hygiene, such as frequent hand washing, can also help prevent the spread of tuberculosis.
- Avoid close contact with TB patients: If you have close contact with a TB patient, you must take precautions, such as wearing a mask, to avoid infection.
- Regular TB screening can help identify the disease at an early stage and prevent it from spreading. People who are at high risk of contracting tuberculosis, such as those who work in healthcare facilities or reside in densely populated areas, should be screened regularly.
- A healthy lifestyle, such as eating a balanced diet, getting adequate sleep, and exercising regularly, can enhance the immune system and lower the risk of tuberculosis.
- Treatment of latent tuberculosis infection: Latent tuberculosis infection occurs when a person has TB bacteria in their body but does not have active tuberculosis disease. Active TB disease can be avoided by treating latent TB infection.