wpid-230px-Tuberculosis-x-ray-1.jpgThe Ghana Health Service (GHS) is to join the international community to mark World Tuberculosis (TB) day slated for Monday March 24 at Manste Agbonaa, Jamestown in Accra.

The 2014, slogan is ?Reach the Three Million.?

The commemoration on the general theme for Ghana is: ?Reaching The Missed TB Cases ? The Untold Story of the Ghanaian TB Patient.?

GHS stated these in a statement issued by Ms Rebbecca Ackwonu, Public Relations Officer and copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra on Thursday.

World Health Organization (WHO) and the Global TB Community had set March 24 to highlight the struggles against Tuberculosis scourge.

The statement explained that: ?It is our duty as a nation to aim at reaching the MDG set target, to find, treat and cure all people with TB.?

It said the GHS and the National Planning Committee for World TB Day had lined up programmes to educate the public on TB and to help find the patients missed.

According to the statement, TB is curable, but current efforts to find, treat and cure everyone affected with the disease were not sufficient.

It said: ?Of the nine million people a year who get sick with TB, a third of them are ?missed? by health systems.?

The statement said World TB Day, therefore, provided the opportunity for affected persons and the communities in which they live, including governments, civil society organizations, health-care providers, and international partners to call for further action to reach the three million people.

It said: ?World TB Day is an opportunity to raise awareness about the burden of tuberculosis (TB) worldwide and the status of TB prevention and control efforts.

The Day is also an occasion to mobilize political and social commitment for further progress.?

According to WHO statistics, progress towards global targets for reductions in TB cases and deaths in recent years had been impressive; adding ?TB mortality has fallen over 45 per cent worldwide since 1990, and the incidence is declining.?

The statement said new TB tools such as rapid diagnostics were helping transform response to the disease and new life-saving drugs were being introduced, but the global burden remained huge and significant challenges persisted.

It said in 2012, there were estimated 8.6 million new cases of TB and 1.3 million people died from it.

It said over 95 per cent of TB deaths occurred in low- and middle-income countries; and that poor communities and vulnerable groups were most affected, adding ?but this airborne disease is a risk to all.?

?TB is among the top three causes of death for women aged 15 to 44; and there were estimated 500 000 cases and 74 000 deaths among children in 2012,? the statement added. GNA

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