The Chennai Corporation will incorporate detection of tuberculosis into its health camps. Follow up and referrals for those testing positive, in addition to starting them on drug treatments will also be taken up.
The camps will be held in all the zones and special equipment will be brought to test people for Tuberculosis, Corporation Health Officer P. Kuganantham said at a meeting organised by the State TB Control Cell, on the occasion of World TB Day. “We are hopeful to detect a large number of cases and put them on the DOTS regimen,” he added. Corporation Commissioner Rajesh Lakhoni later said, “We do not want to have special TB camps as there is much stigma still surrounding the disease and people may not turn up. However, they will feel more comfortable in a general health camp,” he added.
Shambu Kallolikar, project director, Tamil Nadu AIDS Control Society, said the two challenges ahead of those who work in the sector are detection of cases and creating awareness among patients on the need to stick to the DOTS regimen.
Actor Suhasini Maniratnam launched ‘Swasam,' an awareness CD, and distributed mementos to DOTS providers. She urged people to utilise the free diagnosis, and treatment facilities being provided at all government facilities.
M. Nandagopalaswamy, Director of Medical Services, said with 85 per cent cure rate the State has achieved the targets set by the Central government. Earlier, Principal Secretary, Health, V.K. Subburaj flagged off an awareness rally from Labour Statue to Queen Mary's College.