This World TB Day, the IFP in the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature calls for more awareness around TB, and for the country to unite in the fight against this devastating infectious disease.
The 24th of March marks the day in 1882 that Dr Robert Koch announced the discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria that causes tuberculosis (TB). This discovery opened the way towards diagnosing and curing TB.
The IFP urges government to scale up funding for TB control and to take responsibility for the provision of essential medicines and laboratory supplies. It is unacceptable that millions lose their lives – and many more suffer daily – from this preventable and curable disease. It is everyone’s responsibility to play an active role in eradicating TB.
The time for action is now!
Over the past two years, government has shown that it has the financial capacity to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, which begs the question: could a similar approach, with dedicated resources, be rolled out in the fight against TB?
We call upon TB patients not to stop their treatment until specifically instructed by a healthcare worker to do so. It is tragic that many people end up in hospital after their condition has worsened, and this situation puts other patients in danger.
Further, we call upon traditional healers to ensure that they refer all patients with signs and symptoms of TB to the nearest healthcare facilities. Although traditional healers administer safe treatments for many conditions, the highly infectious nature of TB means that it is in the best interests of all involved that TB patients are referred to facilities where they can receive specialised treatment and medications.
The IFP also believes that more must be done to eradicate childhood TB, and that parents and teachers have an important role to play in educating children about TB.
IFP KZN Legislature Communications Directorate
Mrs Ncamisile Nkwanyana, MPL
IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson for Health
078 302 3991