India on Friday pledged its commitment to eliminate tuberculosis by 2025, five years ahead of the global goal to reduce the number of such deaths by 90 per cent by 2030. Speaking at the 29th meeting of Stop TB Partnership coordination committee, Union Health Minister J P Nadda said that India has formulated a national strategic plan with a special focus on stamping out the bactrial disease at grass root levels.
“We have implemented daily drug regimen for treating tuberculosis (TB) in five states and by the year end it will be rolled out in the entire country,” Nadda said. The new regimen helps in reducing relapse rates and number of drug-resistant TB cases.
Nadda said that at present 628 Cartridge Based Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (CBNAAT) machines are functioning in the country for quick diagnosis of TB and the ministry will procure 500 more equipments which diagnoses TB within two hours. The CBNAAT is a revolutionary rapid molecular test which detects Mycobacterium tuberculosis and rifampicin drug resistance, simultaneously.
He further said that the government will frame special programmes to combat multidrug-resistant TB. Later, in a tweet, the Minister said he met the Netherlands’ State Secretary in the Ministry of Health, to discuss possibilities of cooperation in Antimicrobial resistance (AMR).