Steady progress made towards treating TB in Timor-Leste
By Citizen News Service • on October 15, 2010
Dili: A greater number of new positive Tuberculosis (TB) cases are being detected now in Timor-Leste compared to nine years ago. Of these new cases, about 85% are being successfully treated. Timor Leste’s TB burden was first recorded in 1995 and averaged 707 cases per 100,000 of its population. Today it stands at 378 cases per 100,000 of its population. Read more
“Timor-Leste is on track to meeting the MDG goal of halving the number of TB cases in the country by 2015. However this disease still posses a heavy burden in our country,” says Dr Nelson Martins, Minister of Health.
Tuberculosis is a disease caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The bacteria usually attack the lungs, but TB bacteria can attack any part of the body such as the kidney, spine, and brain. If not treated properly, TB disease can be fatal.
“I particularly want to stress the importance of our Timorese doctors who have returned from Cuba to be sensitized to the TB programme’s needs and receive training on standard diagnostic and treatment protocol of the National TB Control Programme (NTP),” stressed Dr Martins, who was the founding manager of the NTP when the proagmme was established in 2000 by Caritas.