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Tuberculosis being detected among those recovering from Covid-19: Karnataka health minister K Sudhakar

Karnataka health and Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar suggested that people must undergo a test if any of these symptoms are seen - cough for more than two weeks, fever in the evening, sudden weight loss etc.

Bengaluru news, Karnataka Bengaluru News latest updatesKarnataka health and Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar. (File)

Karnataka health and Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar said Tuberculosis has been detected among several people who have recovered from COVID-19 and the government has sought a detailed report on this.

Speaking at an event organized by the Health Department on the occasion of World TB Day on Thursday, he said, “For the first time in India, Tuberculosis screening has been conducted by the government for those who have recovered from COVID-19 in the state. Among 25 lakh people who were tested, 144 people were found to have Tuberculosis. These people have contracted Tuberculosis after recovering COVID-19. So, the government has sought a detailed report on the incidence of TB in Covid-19 recovered patients. The State government is committed to make Karnataka TB free by 2025.”

The minister added that TB, like COVID-19, is a contagious disease. “COVID-19 is caused by a virus and TB is caused by a bacteria. The WHO has said that the entire world must be made TB free by 2030. However, our Union government led by our PM Narendra Modi has aimed to make India TB free much before that by 2025. This cannot be done just by doctors and the government. The entire society needs to join hands and work collectively to achieve this target.”

Sudhakar suggested that people must undergo a test if any of these symptoms are seen – cough for more than two weeks, fever in the evening, sudden weight loss etc.

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“In rural areas, people don’t get tested even if they are unwell. One TB patient can spread the disease to at least 10 people. If this happens, one person’s negligence will end up harming others. So, a lot more awareness has to be created about TB. The State government is spending more than Rs 5 crore every year to create awareness about diseases,” he added.

Sudhakar said that on the detection of a contagious disease the people should not stigmatise the patients. “We need to end such stigma in society. Such stigma will cause mental and emotional distress among patients. We must work towards supporting these people emotionally. Ever since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic we have conducted over 25 lakh mental health counselling sessions with the help of NIMHANS. Similarly, along with treatment for TB, the patient and their families need to be counseled. Additionally, once it is identified that a person has TB, they must be guided to isolate and ensured that others in their family are kept safe.” he added.

First published on: 24-03-2022 at 19:00 IST
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