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World Tuberculosis Day: At 316 per lakh, India’s TB prevalence higher than WHO estimations

  • Published
    25th Mar, 2022
Context

24th March is observed as World Tuberculosis Day.

About

About World Tuberculosis Day:

  • Each year, WHO commemorate World Tuberculosis (TB) Day on March 24 to raise public awareness about the devastating health, social and economic consequences of TB, and to step up efforts to end the global TB epidemic.
  • The date marks the day in 1882 when Dr Robert Koch announced that he had discovered the bacterium that causes TB, which opened the way towards diagnosing and curing this disease.
  • The theme of World TB Day 2022 - ‘Invest to End TB. Save Lives.’ It conveys the urgent need to invest resources to ramp up the fight against TB and achieve the commitments to end TB made by global leaders.
  • This is especially critical in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic that has put End TB progress at risk, and to ensure equitable access to prevention and care in line with WHO’s drive towards achieving Universal Health Coverage.

Tuberculosis in India:

  • According to the National TB Prevalence Survey 2019-2021, Tuberculosis (TB) infects 316 Indians per 100,000. It is way above the 193 predicted by World Health Organization (WHO) in 2019.
  • Delhi has the highest burden of all forms of TB and pulmonary TB — at 747 per 100,000 and 534 per 100,000 respectively.
  • Gujarat has the lowest burden of all forms of TB at 137 per 100,000.
  • Kerala is the lowest in pulmonary TB at 151 per 100,000.
  • TB prevalence is much lower among women is 154 per 100,000 as compared to men is 472 per 100,000.
  • TB prevalence among those above the age of 15 such as older age groups, males, the malnourished, smokers, alcoholics and diabetic patients was 31.4 per cent.
  • Annual TB cases in India rose 19 per cent to 1,933,381 in 2021.
  • Also, 493,000 TB deaths were recorded, excluding HIV, a 13 per cent hike from the previous year.
  • There is birectional screening for both, HIV and TB.
  • India remains the highest contributor to global TB cases, accounting for 26 per cent of total cases and 34 per cent of all deaths worldwide.

About Tuberculosis:

  • TB is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis, belonging to the Mycobacteriaceae family consisting of about 200 members.
  • In humans, TB most commonly affects the lungs (pulmonary TB), but it can also affect other organs (extra-pulmonary TB).
  • TB is a very ancient disease and has been documented to have existed in Egypt as early as 3000 BC.
  • TB is a treatable and curable disease.
  • Transmission: TB is spread from person to person through the air. When people with lung TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel the TB germs into the air.

India’s Efforts to end TB:

  • National Strategic Plan (NSP) for Tuberculosis Elimination (2017-2025), The Nikshay Ecosystem (National TB information system), Nikshay Poshan Yojana (NPY- financial support), TB Harega Desh Jeetega Campaign.
  • Currently, two vaccines VPM (Vaccine Projekt Management) 1002 and MIP (Mycobacterium Indicus Pranii) have been developed and identified for TB, and are under Phase-3 clinical trial.
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