THE Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Health and Child Care has urged people to get tested for tuberculosis (TB) in order to get early treatment and avoid the further spread of the disease.
BY NHAU MANGIRAZI
Speaking on the sidelines of World TB Day commemorations at Selukwe Primary School in Shurugwi yesterday, MabvukuTafara MP James Maridadi (MDC-T) said it was imperative that legislators lead by example.
“If we are saying we want to expose corruption, we must as well lead by example on infectious diseases like TB. It’s high time we are tested and know our status and be cured,” he said.
Former Health deputy minister and chairman of TB caucus, Paul Chimedza said the committee was working closely with stakeholders in health sector in effort to curb the spread of TB.
“Community health workers must be equipped with skills to test TB in all outlying areas,” Chimedza said.
“Our thrust is to assist communities on health matters.”
Together As One director Washington Masenda said there was need to have more nutritious food for TB patients as some default due to lack of food.
“We must improve food security as we move to eradicate TB,” he said.
Minister of State for Midlands province Jaison Machaya said the province had a high TB prevalence rate due to mining activities.
“It’s sad to note that TB though curable has relatively high prevalence rate in the province due to mining activities that ironically drive our economy,” Machaya said.
Deputy director of the TB unit, Charles Sandy bemoaned lack of drugs to treat multi-drug resistant (MDR) TB.
Health minister David Parirenyatwa said Shurugwi was targeted because it was a mining area.
“TB is a leading cause of deaths among HIV patients. We must be geared to end it. Poverty contributes to TB,” Parirenyatwa said.
He said health workers were at risk of TB infections and revealed that MDR cases rose in 2015 from 427 to 433.