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‘More investment needed in TB fight’

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BY ERIC MSIKITI:

Stakeholders have called for more investments in the fight against Tuberculosis (TB), one of the leading causes of death among people living with HIV and Aids in Malawi.

Facilitators of Community Transformation Executive Director and Stop TB board member, Thokozire Phiri-Nkhoma, made the call ahead of the United Nations (UN) high level meeting on TB scheduled for New York, the United States, this month.

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TB is high on the agenda at the UN head of states and government summit.

Phiri-Nkhoma said although Malawi has made strides in diagnosing the disease, the country is struggling to put all people suffering from the disease on treatment.

TB is still a challenge in Malawi and we would like to use this forum (UN summit) to advocate more research and funding towards the fight against Tuberculosis. We also want to promote the putting up of good infrastructure, well-ventilated infrastructure, to control the spread of the disease,” Phiri-Nkhoma said.

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About 40 heads of state and government, including President Peter Mutharika, have confirmed participation in the UN high level meeting on TB as part of the UN General Assembly.

Nkhoma said her organisation and other players in the fight against TB would use the meeting to raise awareness among global leaders.

“As a society, as organisations who work with people suffering from TB on the ground, we would like the development of new drugs and a new regime which should take at least three months to complete unlike the current six-month regime which is proving hard for people living with TB to complete,” she said.

Malawi is, in collaboration with the international community, working towards eliminating TB by 2030.

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