Partnering with Private Hospitals to Treat Tuberculosis

Speeches Shim

Wednesday, July 31, 2019
Ghulam Reza listens to the DOTS nurse at Emam Zaman hospital.

Tuberculosis (TB) is a preventable and treatable disease, but unfortunately is one of the main public health problems in Afghanistan. The social stigma associated with having TB negatively impacts the early case detection. And even when patients identify TB, the expense of anti-TB drugs on the market often prohibit patients from being able to afford the full the treatment period required. USAID is funding a project to attempt to address these challenges by involving private hospitals in the Urban Directly Observed Treatment Short Course (DOTS) system along with the Department of National Tuberculosis Program (NTP). Emam Zaman hospital is one of the private health facilities (HFs) involved in the Urban DOTS system and since implementing DOTS, more than 600 TB patients have been registered and are taking anti-TB drugs.

One of the patients, Ghulam Reza, was originally referred to a private practitioner, but was not properly diagnosed. He was referred to a number of private clinics who continued to fail to accurately diagnose his condition and therefore he continued to remain ill. Finally, he was accurately diagnosed at an NTP clinic and referred to Emam Zaman hospital, where he began proper treatment and was ultimately cured.

“I saw too many problems diagnosing my illness and it was diagnosed late, but now I am healthy,” said Ghulam Reza.

Last updated: October 22, 2020

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