DOH intensifies campaign to increase TB awareness

TB a very serious problem affecting countries worldwide," Klecheski said, as he commended the country's TB efforts. (PNA) MANILAThe Department of Health (DOH) has intensified its campaign to increase awareness on tuberculosis (TB), one of the top ten causes of death among Filipinos.

In his speech before residents of Barangay Holy Spirit in Quezon City, DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said around 100 million Filipinos have the disease and most of them may be unaware of it.

Together with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the DOH launched on Friday TB projects and module to increase awareness about the symptoms and cure of the disease.

Duque said the TB Family Development Sessions (FDS) module has been integrated in DSWD's Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program which would improve knowledge about the disease and skills in identifying family members with TB symptoms.

"Napakahalaga po ng programang ito na isinusulong ng DSWD sa pamamagitan ng FDS nang matukoy natin ang mga may TB sa inyong komunidad at mabigyan natin sila ng suporta at mapangalagaan sila sa health centers at makainom po sila ng tamang gamot, ito po ay sadyang may gamot di kagaya ng ibang sakit (Through FDS, those with tuberculosis in your community can be identified and they can be given the proper support and care in health centers so they can take the right medicine. TB can be cured, unlike other diseases)," he said.

DSWD Assistant Secretary Glenda de Rama Relova said the module is part of the national plan to eliminate tuberculosis as well as the social stigma suffered by those who have manageable type of the disease.

In connection to this, Duque said USAID has funded TB innovations and health systems strengthening and TB platforms for sustainable education, treatment and care projects with a combined budget of USD50 million or PHP2.5 billion pesos for five years.

"This is in support of the two national tuberculosis culture program...for the provinces and highly-urbanized areas of National Capital Region, Region 3, Region 4 to help reduced by 95 percent the deaths due to tuberculosis, to reduce by 90 percent the new cases of tuberculosis by 2035," he said.

USAID Charge d' Affaires Michael Klecheski said tuberculosis takes a big toll on individuals, families and communities as it hurt economic growth and affect health security and social stability nationwide.

"In the span of ten years, we have donated 6.5 billion pesos, this shows our commitment and we consider it a very serious effort and

Source: Philippine News Agency

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