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HomeCentral GovernmentFor TB surveillance and monitoring India implementing largest digital programme

For TB surveillance and monitoring India implementing largest digital programme

New Delhi: India has made “significant progress” in scaling up molecular diagnostics and is implementing the largest digital programme for TB surveillance and monitoring, an official said during a convention for health writers in the national capital on Wednesday. Experts discussed the latest innovations, challenges and collaborative solutions in the fight against TB at the National Health Writers and Influencers Convention held at AIIMS, Delhi. Even though tuberculosis (TB) is one of the leading causes of death and disability in India, affecting millions of people every year, doctors said the disease is “not a death sentence” and can be treated with proper treatment.

Additional Deputy Director General, Central TB Division, NTEP, Union Health Ministry, Dr Sanjay K Mattoo gave an overview of the National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme (NTEP) and its aims and challenges to end TB by 2025. Mattoo said, “India has made significant progress in scaling up molecular diagnostics, providing the most advanced medicines, and implementing the largest digital programme for TB surveillance and monitoring.” He also mentioned various collaborations and partnerships that the NTEP has forged with other ministries, such as labour, HRD, the railways, and with civil society and private sector organisations, to reach out to more TB patients and provide them with quality care and support. He also cited the Aarogya Saathi app, which provides information and counselling to patients, and the Nikshay Poshan Yojana, which transfers money directly to the patients’ bank accounts as government initiatives that empower TB patients.

Healthcare experts, policymakers, researchers, and practitioners from the healthcare landscape attended the eighth edition of the event, organised by HEAL Foundation at AIIMS hospital.

Experts highlighted that there were still many gaps and barriers that hinder the effective diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of TB, especially for drug-resistant TB (DRTB), which is harder to cure and more contagious.