Foundation helps build TB facility

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TUBERCULOSIS (TB) is one of the top 10 causes of death in the country, Hela Provincial Health Authority chief executive officer Dr James Kintwa says.
“The growing emergence of multidrug-resistant TB is well-recognised as a public health challenge,” Kintwa said.
“This comprehensive facility we now have will screen and treat patients, plus manage the challenges faced with drug resistance quickly and easily.”
The Oil Search Foundation (OSF) helped the Hela Provincial Hospital build a TB facility.
OSF senior health adviser Dr Vincent Pyakalyia said: “This new clinic is a culmination of capacity-building activities carried out during the height of Coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown restrictions last year.
“Following the establishment of this facility, we delivered TB programme training, refurbished, and installed the GeneXpert unit at the Margarima TB Clinic – (a partnership with Health Department), and donated furniture, microscopes and fridges to other centres across Hela.
“This support to Hela health authority will ensure they accelerate the development of better treatment regime to tackle this disease in the province.
“Such includes treatment initiatives, awareness raising and helping people access diagnosis treatment and support.”
OSF in a statement said it had supported the Hela hospital to strengthen TB diagnostic and treatment services over the past three years.
The recent opening of the hospital’s cough clinic will encourage patients to seek help in a comfortable setting. The clinic is a standard TB clinic that provides TB screening, diagnosis, treatment, education, and HIV services.