We need people – people like those in TB Alert, who are focused and ambitious and care for people at grass roots in the UK, India and Africa. Dr Lucica Ditiu, Executive Secretary of the Stop TB Partnership
TB Alert believes in a world without TB. It is possible. TB is curable, and early diagnosis and treatment helps to prevent the spread of TB. Unfortunately, it is not that simple. Whilst it is clinically possible to diagnose and treat most forms of the disease effectively, the people most vulnerable to TB – who tend to be the poorest and most marginalised in society – all too frequently fall through the gaps in service provision. As many as 40% of the 8.8 million people who develop the disease each year never reach a qualified doctor – those that do, frequently delay going to a doctor until the illness is advanced and therefore more difficult to treat. Even when people do receive a timely and accurate diagnosis, and are started on medication for TB, too many cease treatment before they have been successfully cured of the disease.
Working within national TB control programmes, TB Alert promotes a collaborative, social model of health to address TB. This model considers the social, cultural and economic factors that make some people more vulnerable to TB; less likely to seek help for possible TB symptoms; and less able to complete treatment successfully if diagnosed with the illness.
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