All TB patients to receive standard treatment

Update: March, 10/2015 - 15:51
Doctors take care for TB patients at the Ha Noi-based Central Lung Hospital. — VNA/VNS Photo Duong Ngoc

HA NOI (VNS) — The national tuberculosis (TB) prevention and treatment programme aims to provide all TB patients access to standard treatment methods this year.

The goal of the programme was highlighted at a conference held on Monday to review its implementation over the past year.

The programme will also strive to reduce the TB incidence rate to 187 per 100,000 people, and bring down the fatality rate to below 18 per 100,000.

In 2014, the campaign was carried out nationwide. Through the programme, more than 102,000 cases were detected, leading to a TB incidence rate of 111 per 100,000 people. The recovery rate among the new TB patients was 89.9 per cent.

Viet Nam is one of five countries in the world with a high treatment success rate of more than 70 per cent for reported cases.

Speaking at the event, Deputy Health Minister Nguyen Thi Xuyen said that according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), tuberculosis remains the second leading cause of death among infectious diseases.

Viet Nam is one of 27 countries with a high burden of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) cases, and ranks 12th among 22 countries with a high TB burden.

The deputy minister requested local authorities to make TB prevention and treatment work a part of their socio-economic development target in 2015.

Pro Nguyen Viet Nhung, head of MDR-TB department and director of the Ha Noi Lung Hospital, said that there are enough TB drugs for patients nationwide with support from WHO, partners and the Global Fund.

Viet Nam is trying to reduce the number of TB infections by 30 per cent, and deaths due to TB by 40 per cent by 2020, Nhung added.

The national tuberculosis prevention and treatment campaign will be fortified and linked to anti-HIV programmes, while expanding co-operation with public and private medical units, Xuyen said.

The event's participants discussed models and achievements in the prevention and treatment of tuberculosis, such as developing specific technical skills, encouraging public participation and improving research competency.

TB is the second cause of death among people with infectious diseases in Viet Nam, where more than 100,000 new TB cases and 17,000 TB deaths are recorded every year. — VNS