Protect Children from Tuberculosis

Target: Jagat Prakash Nadda, Indian Minister of Health and Family Welfare

Goal: Save vulnerable children from dying of tuberculosis.

In 2016, a quarter of a million children died from tuberculosis (TB). Although TB is present in dozens of countries, including the United States, India has the largest number of TB cases, accounting for about a quarter of global TB cases. Although the Indian government has increased its spending on TB programs to $525 million per year, health experts say this is less than half of what is needed to effectively combat TB’s ubiquitous presence in India.

Although TB affects adults as well, this disease has caused particularly high mortality among children: a recent study found that TB was in the top 10 causes of child mortality worldwide. There are several reasons for this. The initial symptoms of TB may be similar to many other, less serious, childhood illnesses. Lack of funding means that many places in India don’t have access to the latest diagnostic technology, so many cases of pediatric TB may be missed. It is even harder for doctors without access to proper technology to diagnose drug-resistant TB, potentially leading to many deaths from improper treatment. Clinics in low-income areas may also not be able to provide children’s versions of TB treatments; they often must resort to breaking pills for adults into smaller pieces, meaning that the child may either be getting a dose that is too high or too low for safety.

Sign this petition to urge India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to increase spending on tuberculosis diagnostic and treatment programs to save children from dying of a preventable illness.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Nadda,

TB is a major public health issue in India. It is estimated that 40 percent of people in India have a latent TB infection. Although I applaud you for increasing TB funding from $280 to $525 million, even more money is needed to effectively combat TB in India. Currently, diagnosis in India is mainly performed by microscopic analysis of sputum. This technique is slow, often wrong, and may not be appropriate for small children. Diagnostic equipment must be updated throughout the country if this disease is to be eradicated. Children living in India may be especially vulnerable to dying from TB due to high rates of air pollution which can further damage the lungs.

Reducing the burden of TB in India should be a priority for the the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. I ask that you increase funding for TB programs to improve the diagnosis and treatment of TB, especially for cases of previously-overlooked pediatric TB.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Mikhail Esteves

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3 Comments

  1. PROTECT THE CHILDREN FROM TUBERCULOSIS.

  2. Exactly!!
    Raising awareness about tuberculosis, what tuberculosis is, and how to preventing its spread can help lower tuberculosis rates around the globe is must. It caused by a type of bacterium known as Mycobacterium tuberculosis.The bacteria are spread when someone comes in close contact with a person with an active TB infection.When an infected individual coughs or sneezes weaken the immune system of infected person. As the children are more affected with the any virus. So, it is really essential to protect them from such life threatening health condition every health care system must take healthy initiative of “TUBERCULOSIS AWARENESS” for better prevention.
    THANKS.!! for sharing such informative stuff related TB virus and Children healthcare.

  3. Gen Lovyet Agustsson says:

    raise the awareness of diesases!

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