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Malawi impresses World Bank

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By Faith Kamtambe, Livingstone Town, Zambia:

MAKUMBA—Malawi has done well

The World Bank has said it is impressed with the way Malawi is using $17 million funding for the management of tuberculosis (TB) in the country.

Malawi, Mozambique, Lesotho and Zambia received funding from the Word Bank under Southern Africa TB Health Systems Support (SATBHSS) to implement various projects aimed at managing TB.

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Speaking during the fourth Regional Advisory Committee meeting underway in Zambia, World Bank Group Senior Operations Officer, John Bosco Makumba, said the four countries have performed differently.

Mukumba said Malawi may stand a chance of being considered for additional financing towards the fight against TB.

¨The main focus of the project is detecting TB cases, treatment and finding missing cases. The general observation is that in all the four countries, there is quite a huge number of missing cases, which means that there are unknown cases of TB out there.

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¨We have seen some progress in Malawi on tracing missing cases, which is commendable. There are also notable improvements in the country’s diagnostic capacity, which means that they are reaching out to people in remote areas and find missing cases, ¨ he said.

Ministry of Health Chief of Health Services, Charles Mwansambo, said the World Bank resources have improved findings of TB cases in Malawi.

¨When this project started, we were registering about 155 cases per 100,000 population and our study indicated that we were missing out on about one in two cases because we were waiting for people to come to the hospitals when they had a cough. This time around, with the Word Bank funding, we go to communities to do door-to- door screening. We also have vans that go out to screen people,” he said.

SATBHSS’s total envelope for the project in the four countries is $122 million.

In Malawi, the project’s implementation started in 2017.

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