Western Visayas leads PH fight vs tuberculosis

By Rjay Zuriaga Castor

The Department of Health Western Visayas (DOH-6) announced that the region is leading the country’s fight against tuberculosis (TB).

As of April this year, out of 35,129 TB cases detected in the region, DOH-6 reported a 78 percent treatment coverage rate for all types of TB and an 82 percent success rate in treating Drug-Susceptible Tuberculosis.

A total of 29,021 individuals with TB were also cured and have completed their treatment.

“This accomplishment reflects the program’s effectiveness in providing comprehensive treatment and care for individuals affected by TB,” DOH-6 director Dr. Adriano Suba-an said.

Suba-an emphasized that the region’s treatment rate is significantly higher compared to the national coverage. He, however, noted a lower rate of case diagnosis and treatment for those exposed to TB.

“In the two other indicators we have to double up our efforts to improve our accomplishment,” he added.

The DOH-6 was also recognized to be the first region in the country to implement iDOTS Phase II, which aims to shift Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis services from Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis Satellite Treatment Centers to the various Rural Health Units to improve the accessibility of TB services.

“TB services used to be separate from TB treatment, but now we are integrating the treatment of HIV and other diseases that need to be considered in TB management,” Suba-an explained.

“For example, if a patient has TB, we also consider their nutritional status and look for services that can support their nutritional needs,” he added.

In July last year, the DOH-6 launched two TB Vans equipped with mobile X-ray machines for active case finding and integrated service delivery.

Currently, there are two functional TB culture laboratories in Western Visayas: Teresita L. Jalandoni Provincial Hospital and Western Visayas Medical Center.


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