Lokichar residents, in Turkana South sub county will benefit from Tuberculosis screening targeting selected schools and community units from March 22-23.
Health professionals will also offer HIV testing and public education and awareness on staying free from TB infection.
The free targeted community screening and testing will form part of county initiatives to commemorate World TB day which is marked on March 24 every year as per the calendar of World Health Organization.
The Deputy Director for preventive and promotive Health, Daniel Esimit said World TB day is designed to build public awareness that TB is still the leading cause of death in epidemic proportions hence the need for early identification and treatment.
Esimit further clarified that the planning meeting was informed by a directive from the national TB program on the activities to be undertaken by each county in the run up to the main day.
The County TB coordinator, Dr. Job Okemwa said this year’s theme was, “It is time to end TB”. However, the rallying call to all stakeholders will be ” Find. Treat all. #endTB”.
Dr. Okemwa further explained that the rallying call was a global strategy inaugurated by World Health Organization in partnership with Global Fund and Stop TB to accelerate TB response by ensuring access to care in line with overall drive towards attaining Universal Health Coverage.
“Though we have been using injectable free regimen for the treatment of drug resistance TB over some time, the country is looking forward to the launch of guidelines for the implementation of such treatment during the World TB day,” said Dr. Okemwa
“As a program, this will not be the first time we are conducting targeted community screening in the run up to World TB Day. In 2018, we managed to get 18 cases and another six cases in 2019 from targeted community TB screenings. It is our hope to get more cases this year,” said Dr. Okemwa.
Nationally, the TB day will be held in Meru county and in Turkana County, the event will be commemorated in Lokichar.
The Planning meeting was also attended by the Deputy Director Clinical Services, Kevin Lomuria, CHS coordinator Lucas Edete, County Lab Coordinator James Maragia, Sub County MoH for Turkana South, Veronica Ereng, Central Sub County TB coordinator, Lugado, Turkana North TB coordinator, Steven Ekitela, Turkana South TB Coordinator Albert Kinyonge and representatives of TB program partners, including AMPATHplus.
By Peter Gitonga