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PIA Press Release

Leyte health office calls on non-health providers to help fight TB

By Rodrigo S. Victoria

Tacloban City (15 September) -- Stakeholders coming from the government and private sectors who are non- health providers on the National Tuberculosis Program (NTP) are gathered here today to give their share in the fight against the contagious yet curable disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Dr. Linda Teresa T. Astorga, OIC, Provincial Health Officer II of Leyte province made a pitch of the day's activity in her opening message by saying "it is just proper that not only the health provider will give focus on the disease but other stakeholders".

Various inputs were given to the participants, among which is a lecture about TB and a presentation on the Private-Public Mix DOTS by Dr. Corazon A. Rubio, Fellow, Philippine College of Physicians.

Equally important inputs were given by Windell Supremo, Senior House Insurance Officer of PhilHealth 8, who discussed TB-DOTS package extended by the Philippine Health Corporation; NTP Accomplishments in Leyte province by Dr. Ma. Teresa N. Caidic, OIC, Chief Technical Services of PHO-Leyte.

Dr. Edgardo Gonzaga, regional director of the Department of Health in Eastern Visayas, presented the TB Burden and NTP Priorities in the region. He also presented the recent global, national and local TB situationers.

The health chief of the region reported that there are 98 Filipinos who died because of TB everyday, However, he disclosed that there was a decline in the mortality rate for the past ten years because of the launching of the TB Directly Observed Treatment Short Course (DOTS) which is a cost-effective and comprehensive strategy considered by the National Tuberculosis Program (NTP) as its overarching framework to detect and cure TB.

In Eastern Visayas, the TB mortality rate was declining as it recorded 17 mortality in 1990; 26 in 1995; 34 in 2000 and 27 in 2005.

Dr. Caidic, focal person of the TB program in Leyte, appealed to the stakeholders who attended the advocacy symposium to lend their helping hands for the success in the implementation of various programs that will be undertaken in the campaign against reducing TB cases in the region.

She emphasized that health providers cannot do it alone as she interjected with the TB campaign theme: "Magkaisa! Ituloy ang Pagsugpo sa TB". (PIA 8) [top]

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