"TB requires urgent attention and it is necessary to involve corporates, public enterprises and private sector, for a meaningful contribution to this national mission of TB elimination. To support this courageous goal, India needs a united, corporate voice to help combat TB. Corporate can play a decisive role in the fight against TB as they not only have resources but also access to a large number of workforces," said Dr Avijit Basu StateTB Officer cum Joint Director, Department of Health Services , Government of Assam, while addressing at the event of corporate engagement for TB elimination in Assam held at Guwahati on 17th March.
Dr Basu was the keynote speaker at the consultative roundtable on corporate engagement on TB, which brought together 21 industrialists and senior representatives from the sector to discuss the need for industries and corporates to work towards TB elimination and the welfare of their workforce and community. Talking to Fit Northeast, Dr Basu said that it was a matter of big responsibility for them as they are working in the way to create a TB-Free India as wished by the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi.
He also requests all the industries and organizations to come forward for the TB screening of their workers so that prevention and treatment become easier.
Senior doctors present at the meeting said that since TB is an airborne disease, so it is extremely important to cover our mouth every time we cough. The medication of TB should also be continuously taken by the patient for up to 6 months positively"The success of a business is closely linked to the community's health and prosperity. Corporate engagement can help to take steps to improve awareness and understanding of TB at the workplace and in communities " said Dr Arup Jyoti Kalita, ISE Expert State Technical Support Unit, National TB Elimination Program Assam in his opening remarks of the meeting. Participating in the event, Dr Palash Jyoti Saikia, WHO-NTEP Consultant said, "TB affects individuals during their most productive years, resulting in lost man-hours and lowered productivity.
Although TB is fully curable, the long treatment period results in people dropping out of treatment. We must all work together to successfully turn the tide on TB. Presenting an overview of the state scenario of TB in Assam, Dr Paranjay Bordoloi, State IEC Coordinator, STC Assam, outlined priorities for Assam, including engaging industries, tea gardens and public enterprises, strengthening the community response and inter-sectoral coordination for a comprehensive response to TB.
"If a worker falls ill, this will affect productivity and thereby economic loss to the company. This is a great concern and there is important to design an approach and action plan to eliminate TB together. Corporate participation in overcoming TB is a very good initiative" said Mayuri Bora, Manager-Operations, Federation of Industry and Commerce of Northeastern Region (FINER). Dr Simanta Bora TB HIV Coordinator State TB Cell (STC) Assam, spoke on the TB epidemiology in the state and current NTEP interventions and scope of engagement of industries in TB elimination in Assam.
Senior doctors present at the meeting said that since TB is an airborne disease, so it is extremely important to cover our mouth every time we cough. The medication of TB should also be continuously taken by the patient for up to 6 months positively. A request was also made to the industry owners not to deduct the wage of their daily workers during their leave period for the treatment.