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Health Minister stresses on systems improvement, innovation, stakeholder involvement and greater awareness to fight TB

The Minister for Health & Family Welfare Shri J P Nadda stressed on the crucial role that various stakeholders, including peoples representatives at various levels, can play in fighting the scourge of tuberculosis in the country. All stakeholders have their own constituencies of influences with their own significant impact factor, he stated. Their involvement will enrich policymaking and effective implementation of the TB control programme in the country. The Health Minister stated this at a function to mark the World TB Day, here today.

Speaking at the occasion, the Health Minister stated that although there have been many challenges, the Ministry through the Revised National TB Control programme (RNTCP) has been able to achieve significant achievements in terms of treating people and saving precious lives. The process however, of addressing the challenges that lie ahead is continuous, he mentioned. Through innovations in systems, constant vigilance, effective surveillance and sturdy monitoring combined with awareness among the masses regarding RNTCP, TB can be controlled.

The Health Minister highlighted that inter-sectoral convergence is a crucial component of the Health Ministrys policies where various sectors and Ministries handling sanitation, water, environment etc., will be brought on board for an all-inclusive and comprehensive policymaking for health issues. He informed that the Ministry has been interacting with Members of Parliament to keep them informed about the various initiatives taken up by the Ministry and to seek their active involvement in creating awareness regarding not only the available cure but also spread message of preventive health.

The Health Minister launched the website of the National TB Control Programme, released the RNTCP Annual Report 2015 along with the special issue on TB of the Global Policy Journal, and launched the project on Innovative intensified TB cases finding and appropriate treatment at high burden ART Centres in India.

Also present at the function were Shri Anurag Thakur, MP; Shri Dalbir Singh, President National TB Forum; Dr. Nata Menabde, WHO country representative; Health Secretary Shri B P Sharma; DGHS Dr. Jagdish Prasad, senior officers of the Health Ministry and representatives from the civil society.

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