World Tuberculosis Day

Team Amandelbult, Thabazimbi Municipality and Department of Health and Social Development during TB day at Amandelbult.

AMANDELBULT – World Tuberculosis Day is a worldwide event that aims to raise public awareness of tuberculosis and the efforts made to prevent and treat this disease. This event is held on March 24 each year and is promoted by organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO).

The Department of Health and Social Development, Anglo American Wellness section Amandelbult and Thabazimbi Municipality held the event on 19 March 2012 at Amandelbult. Mineworkers were targeted and various sections were visited within the mine.

The Medical Services Manager of Amandelbult, Dr TM Sedibe presented the overview of the mine in general stating that the mine is doing well in terms of TB. The department of Health and Social Development was represented by Dr Shilumani who also highlighted the challenges and success stories from the department as far as TB related disease is concerned.

Dr Shilumani indicated that the strategies to curb TB and HIV should be to inform the mineworkers, since they are the people that have higher TB and HIV prevalence and incidence rates. He further said that linking mines to the national and local TB and HIV programs will result in an enhanced overall TB and HIV control and contribute significantly to achieving the TB and HIV targets of the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

Global theme for World TB day 2012 is “STOP TB in my lifetime”. Theme for the Republic of South Africa’s 2012 World TB day is “Zero infections, deaths, stigma and discrimination from TB and HIV in my lifetime”.

“We believe that through partnerships with mines, the correctional services, the farms and civil society we will be able to stop the new infections due to TB and HIV,” said  Mayor Patricia Mosito who was representing the MEC for Health and Social Development.

The process starts now through the Intensified Case Finding (ICF) and the HCT campaigns. TB screening and HCT should also be strengthened in our primary health care clinic, she continued. All the miners should be screened for TB and be providing HIV counselling and testing.

In her conclusion, Mayor Mosito urged everybody who has TB to complete their treatment and everyone currently on ARVs to take their treatment for life. “The process for achieving the Zero infections, deaths, stigma and discrimination has started we need to strengthen our efforts for us to reach this vision.” She said.

At the end of presentations, the team visited various sections such as Tumela mine, Dishaba mine, Concentrator as well as Central Services where mineworkers were screened and testing for TB and HIV.

By Joshua Motsomane