Prevalence, death of tuberculosis at disturbing stage in Nepal



National TB Prevalence Survey carried out by the National Tuberculosis Centre said prevalence and death from the tuberculosis are at worrying stages in Nepal.

With the technical support from the World Health Organisation, the survey has revealed that 17,003 people die annually of tuberculosis at the rate of 46 people per day.

Basundhara Sharma, information officer at the National Tuberculosis Centre told Xinhua on Friday that the number is three times higher than estimated earlier adding that it is a worrying picture.

The estimated annual death from the communicable disease caused by mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria remained at 5,500.

The survey report carried out in 2019 and released in August 2020 is the first of its kind done using latest technology and tools.

The study has also revealed that there are 117,000 recorded cases of tuberculosis which is 415 per 100,000.

Sharma said “this is 1.6 times higher than estimated as the estimated cases stand at 60,000.

Sharma said the survey has come as a challenge against Nepal government’s commitment to reduce the infections to 10 in every 100,000 populations by 2035 and eradicate the disease by 2050.

The officials said the reason behind higher prevalence and death than the estimation is because large numbers of cases during the survey was found asymptomatic.

More than 70 per cent had no reported symptoms but showed abnormal chest X-ray, according to the report.

The experts on the tuberculosis say the disease could become epidemic if government doesn’t take a proper measure to tackle the present situation.

Chest physician and tuberculosis expert Dr. Dirgha Singh Bam said the problem might be serious if people don’t act on time adding that the survey shows the country is heading towards tuberculosis epidemic.

“The survey was done prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. I am sure the situation of tuberculosis prevalence has only worsened after the pandemic.’’

Sharma agrees that the present way of intervention is not going to work to control the disease.

“There is need to larger allocation of budget, human resource and better strategy to deal with the situation,’’ he said.

Edited By: Hadiza Mohammed/Ali Baba-Inuwa

Hadiza Mohammed

Hadiza Mohammed: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a media subscriber of the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at] Disclaimer.

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