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About Tuberculosis

Focus: GS II: Health

Why in News?

Padma Shri, Khel Ratna Arjuna Awardee, India’s First Woman Paralympic Medalist and President of the Paralympic Committee of India, Dr. (h.c) Deepa Malik has pledged her support to the TB Mukt Bharat campaign by becoming its national ambassador and a Ni-Kshay Mitra.

About Tuberculosis

  • TB remains the world’s deadliest infectious killer.
  • Each day, over 4000 people lose their lives to TB and close to 30,000 people fall ill with this preventable and curable disease
  • TB is caused by bacteria (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that most often affect the lungs.
  • Transmission: TB is spread from person to person through the air. When people with TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel the TB germs into the air.
  • Symptoms: Cough with sputum and blood at times, chest pains, weakness, weight loss, fever and night sweats.
  • Treatment: TB is a treatable and curable disease. It is treated with a standard 6 month course of 4 antimicrobial drugs that are provided with information, supervision and support to the patient by a health worker or trained volunteer.
  • Anti-TB medicines have been used for decades and strains that are resistant to 1 or more of the medicines have been documented in every country surveyed.
  • Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is a form of TB caused by bacteria that do not respond to isoniazid and rifampicin, the 2 most powerful, first-line anti-TB drugs. MDR-TB is treatable and curable by using second-line drugs.
  • Extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) is a more serious form of MDR-TB caused by bacteria that do not respond to the most effective second-line anti-TB drugs, often leaving patients without any further treatment options.

Nikshay Poshan Yojana (NPY)

  • It is a direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme for nutritional support to Tuberculosis (TB) patients rolled out in April 2018 by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
  • The scheme is a centrally sponsored scheme under National Health Mission (NHM).
    • Financial norms of NHM in terms of cost sharing are applicable to the scheme.
  • This scheme is implemented across all States and UTs in India.
  • All TB patients notified on or after 1st April 2018 including all existing TB patients under treatment are eligible to receive incentives.
  • The patient must be registered\notified on the NIKSHAY portal.

About Pradhan Mantri TB Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan

  • It has been envisioned to bring together all community stakeholders to support those on TB treatment and accelerate the country’s progress towards TB elimination.
  • This is aimed at working towards TB elimination from the country by 2025.
  • Under the scheme, individuals, NGOs and corporates can adopt TB patients by committing support for 1-3 years. 
  • To join the initiative, they have to register on the site, which has an anonymous list of TB patients, categorized according to the primary health centres, blocks, districts and states. 
  • The sponsors can select the number of patients as per their capacity.

Components of the scheme: 

  • The Ni-kshay Mitra initiative which forms a vital component of the `Abhiyaan’ is also launched along with the Abhiyaan.
    • This portal provides a platform for donors to provide various forms of support to those undergoing TB treatment. 
  • The three-pronged support includes:
    • Nutritional, 
    • Additional diagnostic,
    • Vocational support. 

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