TB Prevalence in Eritrea Less Compared to other Countries: WHO

The low prevalence rate of HIV in the country is a plus for Eritrea as the country has reduced the prevalence by more than 60% compared to 1990 levels, thus reaching the MDG target” – Dr. Luis G. Sambo, WHO Regional Director for Africa

Eritrea’s remarkable progress in reducing TB incidence illustrates the merits of a multi-sectoral approach and the benefits of prevention based measures.
Eritrea’s remarkable progress in reducing TB incidence illustrates the merits of a multi-sectoral approach and the benefits of prevention based measures.

By UN Eritrea,

WORLD TB DAY was commemorated with enthusiasm in Asmara, the capital city of Eritrea under the theme “Reach the three million; Find, Treat, Cure TB”.

The commemoration was attended by participants from Ministry of Transport, BIDHO Association, UN Agencies, Ministry of Health, Community TB promoters and the general public.

Dr Araya Berhane, Director of the Communicable Diseases Control Division officially opened the event. He pointed out the overall situation of TB in the country. The estimated TB prevalence in Eritrea is about 4000 per year though so much effort has been put to eliminate the disease. He said that the ministry will continue to intensify efforts to fight TB focusing on areas such as prisons and public places in collaboration with partners so that the cure rate will reach 90%. 

Based on the WHO standards, Eritrea is in a better condition compared to other countries.

In his remarks, Dr Abdulmumini Usman, WHO representative to Eritrea read the address of the WHO Regional Director for Africa, Dr. Luis G. Sambo putting it into Eritrean context. He said that the low prevalence rate of HIV in the country is a plus for Eritrea as the country has reduced the prevalence by more than 60% compared to 1990 levels, thus reaching the MDG target.

He continues reiterating that there is no room for complacency, and Eritrea should continue to strengthen efforts to fight HIV which is an important contributor to the TB epidemic.

To reach the missing patients and move towards eliminating TB, we will need to scale up TB interventions such as, DOTS and TB/HIV collaborative activities among others, especially for the most vulnerable groups.

The WHO representative to Eritrea, Dr Abdulmumini Usman, pledged the continuous WHO collaboration with the government in fighting TB and other diseases as well as improves health conditions.

The various cultural shows, drama, general knowledge contest made the event lively, informative and colorful.

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Graph showing Tuberculosis profile of countries in the region (Source: World Bank 2012)

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