The Sokoto government says it has introduced innovative ways to uncover suspected Tuberculosis (TB) cases as well as to contain the spread of the disease across the state.
“Anyone coughing for more than two weeks is suspect and for any suspected TB case, we have to thoroughly search for all his or her contacts,” Bello Tambuwal, the programme manager, tuberculosis and leprosy control programme, said in a statement on Tuesday.
Giving an update of the successes recorded by the programme under the state Ministry of Health, Mr Tambuwal cited “house-to-house search” for all suspected as one of the innovative ways.
Mr Tambuwal said that the programme had initiated a system where all children suspected to be infected with TB were picked from their villages and brought to the hospital for investigation.
“Many children were hitherto missing, so, we now do chest X-rays for these children to determine their health status.
“Ambulances are sent to bring suspected children to Sokoto, while in Sokoto, we provide free meals and we conduct free X-rays and take them back.
“If there is any detected case, we provide them with free drugs until the kids are fully treated. This is to ensure that children across the state are free from TB and other child-killer diseases,’’ he explained.
The programme manager further said that sequel to the strategy, no fewer than 700 cases of TB were detected across the state.
According to him, various successes had been recorded with 18,366 cases detected in 2021, which doubled the 9,267 diagnosed cases in 2020.
He said that no fewer than 4,880 patients were currently receiving Tuberculosis treatment across the state.
Mr Tambuwal, however, lamented that many suspected cases of coughing were not reported in hospitals, resulting in self-medication by the patients, which often resulted in deaths in homes and spiked community spread of the disease.