People hiding TB - a big problem in Saptari

Rajbiraj, July 1: The tendency of people to hide their TB status for fear of social stigma has created problems in identifying new cases in Saptari district.

Although the recovery rate of tuberculosis (TB) is 95 per cent, the rate of identification of patients with TB is only 30 per cent in the district, according to the District Public Health Office, Saptari.

According to Nepal Anti-Tuberculosis Association (NATA), Saptari branch, to hide tuberculosis amounts to crime against humanity. "By hiding TB, a person is abetting in the transmission of the disease to the entire community," said Bijayananda Jha, President of NATA Saptari chapter.

The number of TB patients taking medicines in the district is 597 and of them 148 are new patients whereas disease has relapsed in five people.

The TB bacillus is found in every third person in the world, and in Nepal 60 per cent of the adults suffer from the disease, as per the World Health Organization (WHO) data. Around 80 thousand people are suffering from TB in the country, according to the National Tuberculosis Centre. RSS

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