Dr. Huot Chan Yuda (HOOT CHAN YUDA), Director of CENAT
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen
It is a pleasure to be here with you today as a partner in the fight against tuberculosis in Cambodia. By supporting this important national self assessment of TB diagnostic networks workshop and through the other USAID funded TB activities, we hope to underscore USAID’s commitment to assisting the National TB Control Program to end TB in Cambodia.
Tuberculosis is a top priority for the US Government. USAID's model to fight TB is known as the Global Accelerator to End Tuberculosis. Through this approach, USAID is bringing together local governments, civil society, and the private sector to accelerate national progress towards the global targets for TB. To ensure the Accelerator’s effectiveness in reaching global and national level targets, USAID has heavily invested in improving the diagnostic capacity of host countries.
Much progress has been made in fighting TB in the last two decades, both globally and here in Cambodia, and I want to congratulate the Ministry of Health and the National TB Program for that success. However, despite great achievements, there are still an estimated 16,000 undetected TB cases in Cambodia. Finding these missing cases demands a great deal of resources, innovation, and sustained commitment. The U.S. Government stands by you as a proud committed partner in this endeavor and we believe that through partnership, we can Stop TB.
USAID activities in Cambodia help strengthen policy development, improve M&E, and build state-of-the-art diagnosis, and digital connectivity capabilities. These investments “accelerate” case finding, implement active case finding activities, and improve early detection and treatment for TB.
This 3-day Training and Self-Assessment of the National TB Diagnostic Network Assessment is a great opportunity to review the current lab network system against the WHO recommendations in the laboratory frameworks to end TB. Together we can critically review the challenges, lessons learned, and openly discuss how to improve TB laboratory networks to deliver timely and accurate results to patients and improve TB case detection.
The result of this assessment will provide us with a clearer picture of the gaps and areas for prioritization in order to improve TB diagnostics. Armed with this information, we can work together to develop short and medium-term interventions to improve access, capacity, and quality of the TB diagnostic network which will increase detection of TB and MDR-TB. I look forward to hearing the outcome of the diagnostic network assessment and seeing what we can accomplish together this year.
In closing, I want to recognize and thank the National TB Program, partners, and USAID colleagues who traveled many miles to participate in this event. Also, many thanks to TB Provincial and Operational District Supervisors for attending this workshop and for your site verification activities. Finally, I want to recognize the CENAT for their commitment, leadership, and successes in ending TB in Cambodia. I wish you all a successful workshop.