By Luminous Jannamike
ABUJA—Nigeria is among seven countries that account for 67 percent of total global tuberculosis, TB, burden even as about 302,096 out of 407,000 cases of tuberculosis went undetected in 2017.
These were revealed by the National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Programme, NTBLCP.
At a briefing in Abuja yesterday ahead of the 2018 World TB Day, National Coordinator of NTBLCP, Adebola Lawanson, said: “The 2017 WHO Global TB report revealed that Nigeria is among the 10 countries that accounted for 64 percent of the global gap in TB case finding with India, Indonesia and Nigeria alone accounting for almost half the total gap.
“In 2017, Nigeria notified a total of 104,904 TB cases which is 26 percent of the estimated 407,000 TB cases for the country in the same year. This huge gap in TB case finding is much higher among children aged zero to 14 with a child proportion of seven percent for 2017.”
Against that background, she said the Ministry of Health has declared 2018 a year to accelerate finding and notification of TB cases amidst concern that Nigeria is among seven countries that accounted for 67 percent of the total global burden.
Represented by Dr. Muhammad Ahmed, the NTBLCP Coordinator said Nigeria’s declaration “aims at mobilising political commitment and resources from all levels of government and partners for the implementation of strategic TB case interventions for early TB case finding and prompt treatment.”
On his part, Dr. Bassey Nsa, Country Director (Challenge TB programme) of KNCV, which partners the Ministry of Health in TB control, treatment and prevention, said a lot more political commitment and funding is required from governments at all levels to bring down Nigeria’s TB scourge.