Zambia makes headway in fighting Tuberculosis in children

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The Zambian government on Friday said it has found new guidance on how to address Tuberculosis (TB) in children.

Sylvia Masebo, the Minister of Health, said the ministry conducted two landmark pieces of research at two of the country’s biggest hospitals whose outcome has provided new guidance on addressing the disease among children.

“We have learned from the two studies that TB is highly curable and that there are now easier and cost-effective ways of diagnosing TB in children that was earlier thought to be challenging,” she told reporters during a press briefing.

She said the findings from the research should result in a scale-up in TB screening in children using the various diagnostic tools available and urged parents to ensure that they present children to health facilities for screening.

The ministry, she said, will continue to foster partnerships with various universities and academic institutions to provide strategic information and evidence to inform the country’s response to TB.

While acknowledging the various interventions undertaken to tackle TB which have resulted in reduction in TB incidence rate from 761 per 100,000 in 2000 to 307 per 100,000 in 2021, the minister said mortality has remained high.

According to her, Zambia loses not less than 2,000 lives due to TB across all age groups every year, a situation that calls for bold high-impact interventions. Enditem

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