World Tuberculosis Day

World Tuberculosis Day Quick Facts - IN

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2024 Date24 March 2024
2025 Date24 March 2025

World Tuberculosis Day

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World Tuberculosis Day History

World Tuberculosis Day is dedicated to raising awareness about the severe impact of tuberculosis (TB) on people's health worldwide. It promotes the need for more significant efforts towards prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of this dangerous disease. The observance further aims to debunk myths and stigmas, and to stress individual responsibility and the importance of a collective societal response to the control and elimination of TB.

World Tuberculosis Day was established by the World Health Organisation in 1982 to commemorate the discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis by Dr Robert Koch in 1882. For India, this day holds high relevance due to the country's high tuberculosis instances, accounting for approximately a quarter of the world's TB cases. India's dire situation pressurizes the medical fraternity and the government to put substantial efforts into reducing the TB rate, making the objective of World Tuberculosis Day exceptionally vital for the nation.

In India, World Tuberculosis Day is observed with various activities aimed at raising awareness. These include diagnostic camps, health edification programs, and media campaigns. Medical institutions, NGOs and government agencies collaborate in organising these events, intensifying their efforts towards the goal of eradicating tuberculosis from the country. The magnitude of these activities explains India's determination to combat TB. Typically, World Tuberculosis Day is observed on 24th March, reminding us all annually of the gravity of the disease and the collective resolve needed to eradicate it from our society.

Facts about World Tuberculosis Day

  • The theme for World Tuberculosis Day in 2024 was Yes! We can end TB. The theme in 2022 was Invest to End TB. Save Lives.
  • Tuberculosis is the leading killer of HIV/AIDS-positive people.
  • The struggle to end TB is not just a struggle against a single disease. It’s also the struggle to end poverty, inequity, unsafe housing, discrimination and stigma, and to extend social protection and universal health coverage. - World Health Organization Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom
  • The Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP) in India has been instrumental in taking measures and spreading awareness on World TB Day. It launched the "TB Harega, Desh Jeetega" campaign in 2014, aiming to free the country from TB.
  • The Indian Government announced the National Strategic Plan for TB Elimination 2017–2025, aimed at achieving a "TB-free India" by 2025, five years ahead of the global Sustainable Development Goal target.

Top things to do in India for World Tuberculosis Day

  • Stay informed about tuberculosis and its symptoms.
  • Learn more about the history of tuberculosis and how doctors have worked to treat it.
  • Attend Lectures and Workshops: Major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Kolkata hold public lectures and health workshops that discuss the impact of tuberculosis and ways to prevent it.
  • Read a book to learn more about Tuberculosis in India:
    Tuberculosis in India: A Political Ecology Approach - by Peiling Zhou.
    Health and Medicine in the Indian Princely States: 1850-1950 - by Waltraud Ernst. Although not entirely about tuberculosis, this book gives a holistic view of the health scenario in India during the said period which includes a discussion on tuberculosis.

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