Blantyre faring well in TB fight


Blantyre District is among the districts in the country which are doing very well in the fight against Tuberculosis as the recovery rate is at over 90 percent and almost all the people that have got TB and HIV are on antiretroviral therapy (ART).

Speaking to Malawi24, Director of Health and Social Services in Blantyre Dr. Gift Kawalazira said the district has systems that are actually able to capture these individuals and channel the right management to them.

Kawalazira added that they have mobile vans that go around the district to check on people and also they do a spot check and diagnose people that might have TB whilst on the road.

“So far the position of the district is that we are doing very well. So it means that if you have got TB in Blantyre you have 90 percent chance of being cured if you come to the hospital and take medication and if you adhere to medication.

“For the people that have HIV as well as TB we make sure that they are put on ART and as a district almost all of them at 99 percent are actually on ARVs which is a good thing because it also helps with body strength and immunity to fight tuberculosis as a disease,” explained Kawalazira.

During Cylone Freddy, a lot of people were displaced and Blantyre district supported with response by setting up clinics in camps and also intensifying surveillance especially using the community sputum collection points through volunteers.

“We have got more than 1200 community sputum collection volunteers across the district. So we had to make sure that people that were at high risk of TB were actually reached out and we managed to collect sputum for testing. However, I need to say that the real picture will be assessed later,” said Kawalazira.

One of the volunteers Nellie Kumalonje from Kampala Village TA Somba, Blantyre said Sputum collection points managed by volunteers have brought a big impact in as far as TB case detection is concerned.

According to Kumalonje, Volunteers are registering more cases of TB through community sputum collection points and a number of presumptive are flocking to Volunteers for screening.

“People are no longer walking a long distance to get tested for TB, right now they are being assisted by us volunteers in their communities and this is a good initiative,” said Kumalonje.

Follow us on Twitter: