5th April, 2011
The Institute of Human Virology, Nigeria (IHVN), says it will establish more tuberculosis laboratories to eradicate the disease in Nigeria.
Dr. Patrick Dakum, the Chief Executive Officer of the institute, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday that the TB laboratories would be established in Jos, Kano, Port Harcourt and Maiduguri Teaching Hospitals.
â€œCurrently in the country, we are going to be supporting a number of hospitals to develop their capacity for TB culture in the next two years, with the funding we are going to get from the global fund.
â€œThis would be reference laboratories that would have the fact samples from several places, but in addition to developing the lab, we are also going to be supporting the sites to develop capacity for clinical treatment. We have identified the labs that will be the principal recipient for the global fund for TB grant for Nigeria and our role in the grant is to provide support for multi-drug resistant TB management, both for detection and also clinical treatment,â€ he said.
He stressed that the institute was supporting the TB laboratory in Zaria to test for drugs resistance variants.
Dakum urged people who sweat in the night with severe cough to go for sputum test, so as to detect if they were suffering from tuberculosis.
He stressed that it was important to prevent people from contacting TB in the first place.
â€œif we reduce the number by detecting them and then placing them on treatment, we reduce the incidence of transmission to other people.â€
Dakum said the death rate for multi-drug resistance was high, apart from the effect it had on patients, adding that there was need for quick treatment to avoid transmitting the bacteria that were already resistant to drugs.
The IHVN Chief Executive Officer also disclosed that the institute was supporting a survey conducted by Nigeria and the Federal Ministry of Health, to get reports on the percentage of multi-drug resistance to TB in the country.
A document made available to NAN by the institute, stated that Nigeria was the fourth largest country with tuberculosis burden in the world, with between 460,000 and 500,000 new cases every year.
It reports that tuberculosis teamed with HIV to cause death among people living with HIV.