World TB Day - Join the Alliance and its members in the fight against TB
Geneva, 24 March 2011 | As we celebrate World TB Day today the Alliance joins its member the Stop TB Partnership in its campaign "On the move against Tuberculosis - Transforming the fight towards elimination", and calls upon Alliance members and partners to highlight the critical role played by health workers in the fight against this disease. A component of the "Global Plan To Stop TB 2011-2015" clearly spells out the need to "Strengthen human resource development for TB control in the context of overall health workforce development."
"Ensuring access for all to proper TB care relies heavily on the availability of well-trained health workers, stresses Dr Lucica Ditiu, Executive Secretary of the Stop TB Partnership. Without the support of the millions of nurses, doctors, laboratory technicians, microbiologists, paediatricians, radiologists and all other health workers categories, people with TB cannot get an early diagnosis and the support they need to ensure completion of treatment and prevention of drug resistance."
Although TB is preventable and curable, it accounts for nearly 2 million deaths per year. It remains a major health challenge in many low- and middle-income countries, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa, where the shortage of health worker is also acute.
"Reinforcing health workforce in countries severely affected by TB will directly contribute to reducing the burden of the disease." Said Dr Mubashar Sheikh, Executive Director of the Alliance. "To this end, training of sufficient health care workers, including community health workers, in diagnosis and treatment of TB will be essential."
In its convening role, the Alliance works with some 300 members worldwide, many of them are directly or indirectly tackling TB. Today, the Alliance calls upon all members and partners to join the fight to Stop TB.