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By Chukwudi Nwauba 

Anambra State Commissioner for Health, Dr Vincent Okpala has educated the public on chronic diseases management, saying routine checks and early detection helps in the management of such diseases.

Dr Okpala while speaking on the ABS live radio programme in Awka noted that such diseases could only be managed.

The commissioner noted that the Government’s partnership with the group had helped in the treatment of tuberculosis in the state.

“With COVID-19 pandemic, we are all afraid that it will affect the TB response but in your innovative way it still happened that your work actually complimented COVID-19 response with respect to the Genexpert testing.’’

He assured that his ministry would do everything possible to ensure that the response of TB programmes in the state would be of great benefit to Ndi Anambra.

“We hope that the TB experience will as well be a rich experience to our partners.

“I truly applaud KNCV leadership in this area and it is our hope to see a study coming out from here.

“Although it did not affect the response but we are also aware that when the TB alarm message comes to the state and we understand the need for more extra Genexpert machines to be deployed.

“It is something that we are actually working on and soon it will be made available, so that we can meet the minimum number of machines required,’’ he said.

Dr Okpala noted that his ministry with respect to capacity-building had continued to train Disease Surveillance and Notification Officers, Monitoring and Evaluation Officers on data collection and usage.   

Executive Director, Chief of Party USAID TB LON Regions 1 and 2 Project, Dr Betrand Odume said that the group project was a big time one, which made them to have an office in the state.

Dr Odume explained that their visit was to brainstorm with the commissioner in order to achieve a positive as well as objective of the partnership on TB.

He commended the state’s tuberculosis team for their performance in the TB programme in the state. 

“The achievement of the state TB team is highly commendable and we must also appreciate Gov. Willie Obiano and his commissioner for their support to the TB team and partners.

“KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation has developed a global `Find and Treat all Missing Persons with TB’ (FTMP), strategy with an operational guide that defines a practical district level approach to find, diagnose and treat people with TB.

“Our strategy guides high TB-burden countries on how to systematically assess the local situation and translate the outcome of analysis in affordable, effective and patient-centered strategies to increase access to high quality TB diagnosis and care. 

“KNCV builds country capacity to find the missing patients in a standardized and measurable way that takes into account the country context, along with the health needs of vulnerable patients,’’ Dr Odume said.

In attendance during the courtesy visit are, Dr Uchechukwu Onyejimbe, Director Public Health/Diseases Control, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Medical Supplies and Equipment, Mrs Onyedikachi Oluchi and Mr Ebuka Ugwu TB Adviser. (MOI)

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