By Alice Lubwama
The latest reports from the Tuberculosis department at Mulago hospital indicate that men are more susceptible to catching TB compared to women with a ratio of one woman in four people.
According to the head of the TB and Leprosy department in the health ministry, Dr Stavia Turyahebwa, more men contract the disease because they are always in crowded places where transmission can
easily take place.
Dr Turyahebwa notes that although men are the ones carrying the highest disease burden in the country, their health visits are very low which leads to increased deaths.
TB is a highly infectious and deadly airborne disease which is preventable and curable, when diagnosed earlier and isolate and treat the patients to prevent the transmission.
According to the World Health Organization annual TB report for the financial year 2016/2017, the budget for Uganda’s national TB program is $54 million of which only 29% is funded, leaving 71% not funded.
Worse still, of the 29%, only 3% is covered from domestic sources; while 26% is covered by external grant funding.
According to Dr Turyahebwa the ministry of health is now changing the TB treatment regiments and time line from 24 months to nine months, making life easy for patients to adhere to treatment as well as cut on
the costs of drugs and treatment.