Friday, September 5, 2008

Fighting Tuberculosis

In May 2008, while speaking to a group of young German students studying Public Health in Limburg, Germany, I was amazed to see that they were all studying about Tuberculosis, a disease that kills over 1.5 million people annually, and yet they had not seen even a single patient with TB! Back home, almost every other person suffers from this disease that eats up your lungs, as if it is like a soft cake! Catholic Relief Services, Caritas India, Catholic Health Association of India and CBCI Commission for Health have joined together in fighting this disease, with support from Global Fund : to be called the First IMPACT Project. Social Welfare Institute will partner with them to minimize the spread of this disease as thousands are affected by tuberculosis in the three districts we serve. Sr. Anisha SDS, Mr. Bipul Roy, and Mr. Shyamapada Goswami have identified as contact persons for North Dinajpur, Malda and South Dinajpur districts, respectively.

The first workshop was held at Kolkata on 02 Sept 2008, and was attended by over 35 participants from various organizations. The Social Welfare Institute team was led by Puthumai A. Nazarene, the Director. He also functioned as the Master of Ceremonies for the entire program, besides taking care of a presentation on the Health network of Catholic Church in West Bengal. The West Bengal State Health Secretary, State Tuberculosis Officer, and many other persons from the health department and from various non-governmental and church-based organizations were present. Dr. Anasua Bagchi of CBCI-Health Commission had organized the meeting.

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