Tuesday, March 23, 2021 1:16 pm
World TB Day is observed annually on March 24 to raise awareness about one of the world’s deadliest infectious diseases. Even though tuberculosis (TB) is entirely preventable and treatable, nearly 4,000 people lose their lives to TB every day, and almost 28,000 become infected.
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest provider of HIV/AIDS care worldwide, welcomes everyone to be part of the World TB Day 2021 under the theme of “Time’s Up for HIV & TB”. This, according to the organization, is to remind everyone that the world “is running out of time to act on commitments made by global leaders to end the deadly disease. The fight against TB is especially critical for people living with HIV—and amid COVID-19, since both TB and the novel coronavirus affect the lungs.”
“TB remains a significant threat to the world, and particularly for people living with HIV,” said AHF Deputy Chief of Global Advocacy and Policy Loretta Wong. “It’s vital, especially during the pandemic, that the world stays focused on ending TB to preserve the gains we’ve made over recent years. AHF urges governments and global public health organizations to guarantee treatment to all who are affected by TB. Time has run out for HIV and TB – it’s time to ensure everyone has the opportunity to know their TB and HIV status and protect their health!”
World TB Day coincides with the announcement in 1882 by German physician and bacteriologist Robert Koch of his discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacillus that causes the disease. The first World TB Day was held one century later, in 1982, when TB incidence was rising worldwide.
AHF Nigeria in collaborationwith other stakeholders and partners: Global TB Caucus,Civil Society for the Eradication of TB in Nigeria (TB Network), Premium Times Centre for Investigative Journalism (PTCIJ) and with technical support from the TBHIV Unit of NASCP, will host a panel discussion on Twitter with theme: Tuberculosis in a time of Covid-19, as further avenue to create awareness, educate Nigerians about TB, review interventions in place and rally stakeholders’ commitment to stamp TB out of Nigeria. TweetMeet is scheduled for 2: 3:PM on Wednesday, March 24, 2021, the World TB Day.
“There is no better time than now for us as a community to halt the march of TB and HIV, with each and every one of us renewing our commitment, and agreeing time’s up for HIV and TB” said Dr. Echey Ijezie, AHF Nigeria Country Program Director.