ISLAMABAD - The District Health Department of Islamabad Capital Territory Administration on Thursday organized a ‘Stop-TB’ awareness walk at Rural Health Center, Bhara Kau, with a view to raising awareness in the masses about the disease and seeking early treatment and avoiding its transmission to the healthy people.

The walk was started at the Rural Health Center, Bhara Kau, Islamabad. People from all walks of life including TB experts, healthcare providers, lady health workers, children, students, notables of the area, private medical practitioners, traders community, farmers and representatives of NGOs took part in the awareness walk. DHO Islamabad Dr. M. Azhar, additional DHO Dr. Najeeb Durrani and officials of National TB Control Programme attended the walk with a commitment to stop the TB and make the country free from tuberculosis.

Addressing the participants, Director, National TB Control Programme, Dr. Ijaz Qadeer, said that each year 4,00,000 new cases of TB were reported in the country and over 5000 health facilities in the country were providing treatment facilities to the TB patients.  He said that the role of lady health workers was of vital importance for creating awareness in the masses and providing counselling services for early treatment. He further said that the main focus of the TB control programme was its eradication and early detection of new cases of TB and to provide patients testing and treatment facilities for which community mobilization was also under way. DHO, ICT, Dr. M. Azhar also spoke on the occasion and urged the lady health workers to create maximum awareness of the disease in the masses and facilitate them for their early treatment. Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Najeeb Durrani, additional district health officer of ICT who is in-charge disease surveillance said that ICT health department was taking effective measures to implement the national TB control programme in the capital in its true spirit under.  “Capacity building of medical officers, lady health workers working at rural health facilities is also underway and they are imparted special training for better monitoring, supervision and clinical management of patients as per WHO guidelines,” he added.

He said that comprehensive treatment facilities were available to the TB patients at Rural Health Center, Bhara Kau. District Health Department Islamabad has also signed memorandum of understanding with the private medical practitioners of rural areas in February 2012 and over 1500 private medical practitioners have been imparted training at the PIMS with internationally recommended medicine regime protocol for treatment of TB patients, he further said.