20.16 lakh tuberculosis cases, 73,551 deaths notified from Jan-Oct: Minister
As many as 20.16 lakh tuberculosis cases and 73,551 deaths have been notified from January till October under the National TB Elimination Programme (NTEP), Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar told Lok Sabha on Friday.
There has been an 18 per cent increase in the number of tuberculosis cases notified under NTEP in 2021 (21.35 lakhs) in comparison with 2020 (18.05 lakhs), Pawar said in a written reply.
The increase in the number of tuberculosis cases notified under NTEP has been due to increased efforts taken by the programme to decentralise diagnostics, active case finding, intensified private-sector engagement and specific strategies to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 and reach pre-Covid levels. The government has several steps to eliminate tuberculosis by 2025 under the 'Nikshay Mitras' initiative, she said.
The Union Health Ministry launched the Pradhan Mantri TB Mukt Bharat Abhiyan on September 9 for community support to tuberculosis patients with the objective to provide patients with additional nutritional, diagnostic and vocational support.
The Ni-kshay 2.0 portal has been developed to facilitate registration of Ni-kshay Mitras and guidance documents shared with all states and Union Territories to implement the initiative. Periodic reviews are also done to monitor the initiative's progress at the national and state and Union Territory level, Pawar said.
With implementation of the National Strategic Plan 2017-25, according to the Global Tuberculosis Report - 2022, incidences of tuberculosis in India had reduced by 18 per cent from 256/lakh population in 2015 to 210/lakh population in 2021 -- 7 percentage points better than the global average of 11 per cent.
To address the challenges and achieve SDGs by 2025, NTEP implements key activities, such as state and district-specific strategic plan for targeted interventions in high burden areas, provision of free drugs and diagnostics to patients including for drug-resistant tuberculosis, active tuberculosis case finding campaign in key vulnerable and co-morbid population, integration with Ayushman Bharat - Health and Wellness Centres to decentralise screening and treatment services closer to the community. Activities also include private sector engagement, including incentives for notification and management of tuberculosis cases, scale up of molecular diagnostic laboratories to sub-district levels, Ni-kshay Poshan Yojana for nutritional support to patients, intensified IEC campaigns to reduce stigma, raising community awareness and improving health seeking behaviour, multi-sectoral response with involvement of line ministries and tracking of notified cases through case-based portal Ni-kshay.
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