Nepal’s TB patients continue to seek care amid trying post-quake circumstances
The challenges Nepal’s recent earthquakes pose for Tuberculosis (TB) care and control are significant. In Nepal, TB remains an ongoing public health burden, with health officials keen to ensure that advances in recent years are not threatened.
In the wake of the disaster, Nepal’s National Tuberculosis Centre formed a rapid response team and with logistical support from WHO have started tracing TB patients in the 14 most affected districts, with a priority on reaching those with Multiple Drug Resistant (MDR) TB. On 21 May, NTC and WHO staff met with District TB and Leprosy Officers in Bhaktapur to explore issues surrounding post-quake TB care and control in the district. The team also met with MDR TB patients living in temporary camps in order to identify patients’ immediate needs and ensure their continued care and access to treatment. According to the NTC, addressing living conditions in camps, increasing patient access to infection control measures and minimizing stigma have been identified as key areas for action.