Maharashtra: Health Department Intensifies Tuberculosis Eradication Efforts, Statewide Study Underway

Maharashtra: Health Department Intensifies Tuberculosis Eradication Efforts, Statewide Study Underway

The study will include participants aged 18 and above, targeting an estimated population of 1.76 crore people in Maharashtra.

Swapnil MishraUpdated: Friday, February 09, 2024, 03:41 AM IST
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Maharashtra: Health Department Intensifies Tuberculosis Eradication Efforts, Statewide Study Underway | Pixabay

Efforts to eradicate Tuberculosis (TB) from Maharashtra by 2025 have become the top priority for the state's public health department for which they are not leaving any stone unturned to achieve this target by implementing several measures and conducting studies.

To gauge the efficacy of the Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination in preventing Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection among adults, the state health department will be rolling out a statewide study starting from April this year. The study will include participants aged 18 and above, targeting an estimated population of 1.76 crore people in Maharashtra.

According to experts, BCG vaccines have been widely used but the question over its effectiveness in preventing TB and the duration of immunity post-vaccination is still debatable. The upcoming statewide study aims to provide clarity on these issues.

Dr. Pravin Vedpathak, assistant director of the state family welfare department and in charge of routine immunisation, highlighted that a recent review meeting was conducted by the central TB division of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

“The study will commence in April 2024 across the state. Currently, health officials are undergoing training for the study, and only individuals who voluntarily agree to participate will be included,” he said.

Senior health officials stated that participants willing to enroll in the study will be shortlisted, with actual immunisation scheduled to begin later. Moreover, the outcomes of the study will be evaluated based on the directions of the central health ministry.

The central TB division of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will supply vaccines, syringes, and other necessary items for the programme, based on the estimated target population provided by the state.

Meanwhile, the state health department has launched several campaigns to control the spread of TB in Maharashtra. Notably, they have engaged gram panchayats to allocate a minimal budget for TB campaigns, underscoring the comprehensive approach taken to combat the disease.

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