“Childhood TB still a burden”

Fiona Ruzha, H-Metro Reporter

THERE is need to work on childhood tuberculosis, which has seen the country lagging behind the benchmark number, a senior government official has said.

The deputy director for Aids and Tuberculosis in the Ministry of Health and Child Care Dr Charles Sandy said despite gains made, childhood TB remained a burden as the country aims to meet the World Health Organisation recommendation on childhood TB.

“A lot of work still needs to be done on childhood TB and it remains as a public health problem for the country.

“In Zimbabwe, childhood TB has been accounting for five to seven percent of annual notifications over the last few years and this is against WHO recommendations which suggested that countries should aim to have at least 15 percent of all notifications.


“Therefore, we should aim a bit higher at least 12 percent,” he said.

Meanwhile, last week Government celebrated a five-year financial support of more than US$25 million from USAID during the period of 2015 to 2019 and also The Union, who were the lead partner on the initiative called ‘Challenging TB’.

Through efforts of this partnership, great strides have been made over the years on treatment coverage and TB incidence which has gone down to 210 per 100 000 population in 2018 from 278 per 100 000 in 2014 as the country aims to end TB by 2035.