Sunday, October 20, 2019

USAID helps set up new child TB detection centre at Dhaka Shishu Hospital

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2018-12-20 01:43:52 BdST


A specialised tuberculosis (TB) detection centre has been inaugurated at Dhaka Shishu Hospital to reduce the burden of the infectious disease which is difficult to catch in children.

The ‘Specialised Child TB Centre’ is equipped with efficient specimen collection procedures and trained staff for collection of samples. It is linked with in-house GeneXpert testing facility to make diagnosis of child TB easy.

Also, the facility will serve as a referral linkage for other public and private facilities to help in bringing more patients to this facility for better management.

“We hope this child TB facility will serve as an effective platform and help the NTP (National TB Programme) to establish more specialized child TB facilities in the country in future,” said Joseph Monehin, deputy director of the USAID Bangladesh’s population, health, nutrition and education office.

He along with Additional Director General for health services Nasima Sultana, and Line Director of the National TB Programme Md Shamiul Islam inaugurated the centre on Wednesday.

The USAID helped to set up the centre by the Challenge TB Bangladesh Project.

TB is still a major public health concern around the globe, particularly in developing countries.

According to the WHO Global TB Report 2017, Bangladesh is one of the world's 30 high burden countries with TB.

Childhood TB still remains a major challenge for Bangladesh.

In 2017, of the estimated 36,000 child TB cases in Bangladesh, only 10,171 or 29 percent cases were reported to the NTP and the remaining was missed.

Generally, the diagnosis of childhood TB is difficult largely due to the fact that the disease in children produces non-specific clinical manifestations.

Sputum smear examination is the only and widely used test for the diagnosis of pulmonary TB. Moreover, young children cannot produce sputum and this makes the diagnosis of TB difficult among them, the USAID deputy director said.

“There is also a lack of specimen collection facilities in the outpatient departments of the hospitals which makes collection of sputum from children difficult,” he said. The new centre will address all those concerns with its modern facilities.

He said this centre will support diagnosing and treating more children to reduce child TB burden on Bangladesh.