MDR-TB on the rise in urban slums

MDR-TB on the rise in urban slums
Highlights

The urban slums in the Southern and Western parts of the city are reporting a serious public health crisis with a high number of new cases of Tuberculosis (TB) and Multi-Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB). 

Hyderabad: The urban slums in the Southern and Western parts of the city are reporting a serious public health crisis with a high number of new cases of Tuberculosis (TB) and Multi-Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB).

The NGO ‘Helping Hand Foundation’ in association with the State TB Society, RNTCP conducted a grass root level contact programme in Sothern and Wester part of the city recently.

In the part of the programme the NGO distributed food and hygiene kits to the patients at the Barkas Community Health Centre (CHC).

Southern parts of the city like Jangampet, Babanagar, Shaheenagar, Erakunta, Wadi, Bandlaguda, Ghouse nagar, Hashimabad, Indira Nagar, Noori Nagar, Milad Nagar, Quba Colony, Ahmed Nagar, Jehangirabad are reported in high level of TB and MRD TB cases.

There are many cases which were reported recently. Farzana (name changed) is just a 10-year-old resident of Bandlaguda, who is now battling with TB and has fibrocavitary Disease of the lungs due to the damage done by TB bacteria as she defaulted on her treatment. A few more miles away another 40-years-old widow is suffering from these deadly diseases.

In this ‘Grass Root Level Contact’ programme which is initiated by city-based NGO Helping Hand Foundation for MDR TB patients through an MOU which was recently signed by the NGO and State TB Office, will encompass health care workers of the NGO maintain regular contact with the MDR TB patients, all through the treatment period and will support them with Counselling, food and ration packs every month.

Mujtaba Hasan Askari, President of Helping Hand Foundation said, “Our initial focus will be on Old City Urban slums where high incidence is being reported and slowly we will cover other areas. Six of our Volunteers attached to the Government Community Health Centre at Barkas and they will maintain a data base of MDR TB cases.

Volunteers will visit their houses 2 to 3 times in a month and ensure they are taking medication regularly and getting proper diet. Further all family members in contact of the patient will be counselled for TB test and we will be keeping a close watch as per guidelines of RNTCP.”

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Chella Devi, District TB Officer, said the launch of this unique initiative at the Government Community Health Centre (CHC), Barkas, will support patients through the entire course of the treatment and this nutritional support plays an important role in combating TB as it is seen to affect malnourished, undernourished and people of poor socio-economic conditions.

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