Test And Treat TB To Save Lives

NCD Governor Powes Parkop and other key stakeholders in the campaign to end Tuberculosis this morning (27 March 2022) pledged their support and recommitment to increase awareness and seek preventive measures in saving lives.

Papua New Guinea remains one of the highest burdened Tuberculosis (TB) countries in the world, a small yet an important gathering was told at Ela Beach.

Active City Development Program (ACDP) hosted a walk from Sir Hubert Murray Stadium to the beach, an event to raise public awareness, promote services and solutions to support men, women and children to realize how TB affects and takes lives.

One of the key messages emphasized was learning about TB signs and symptoms through tests and get treated to save lives.

Speaking during the occasion, Governor Parkop urged city residents to embrace a healthy lifestyle.

"When COVID-19 hit the world and PNG for that matter in 2019, we took it very seriously and began adhering to its protocols to avoid contracting COVID. We must do the same for TB. It is a major killer in PNG,” said Governor Parkop.

"TB has been around in PNG for a long time, but how can we end this killer disease?"

"It's up to us how to live a healthy lifestyle, and more importantly, how we manage the health and welfare of our own homes.”

According to Dr Morimai Ipai, Disease Control Coordinator at the NCD PHA, there have been over 6000 TB cases diagnosed every year in NCD alone.

He said a third of this number, lost their lives simply because of their own carelessness.

"Globally, 10 million people are affected each year, of which 3 million people die. It's a contagious disease caused by germs and bacteria,” said Dr Ipai.

He added: "It is an airborne disease. When coughed out by a TB affected person, those in the same room, especially those with a weak immune system will easily catch the disease.”

"Once a person is diagnosed, he or she must complete the TB dose and not stop halfway through or the drug will become resistant and will not work, resulting mostly in death.”

ACDP partnered with Business for Health TB, NCDC PHA, World Health Organisation, NGOs, Community Women's groups, representatives from Nambawan Super Limited and schools in NCD participated in the walk to mark the World TB Day themed “Invest to End TB to Saves Lives.”

Today saw among other activities a TB Song - a performance to prevent TB and a pledge for the participants who took part in the walk to Stop TB as well as other performances by the ACDP PNG Circus group.

Press Release