President Edgar Lungu says Zambia has made steady progress in tackling the Tuberculosis (TB), pandemic by reducing TB incidence rate by 50 percent between 2000 and 2016.
President Lungu added that the proportion of TB patients successfully treated has been over 85 percent in the last decade, reaching 88 percent in 2017.
He said this in New York yesterday during a high level meeting of United Nations General Assembly on the fight against TB.
The Head of State however indicated that despite the progress, Zambia still remains one of the 30 high TB and TB/HIV burden countries with a TB incidence of 376 per 100, 000 population.
President Lungu stated that the situation places the country’s TB incidence rate at two times higher than the average incidence of the African region and three times higher than the global average.
He further noted that every year, an estimated 62, 000 people fall ill due to TB in the country out of which 42 percent of these remain undetected due to limited access to highly sensitive TB diagnostic tools.
The President said as a result, approximately 46 people die every day in the country to a cause attributable to TB.
Meanwhile, President Lungu indicated that efforts at country level have been reinforced towards the elimination of TB by 2030.
He said the Country has increased domestic funding towards TB programmes from 9 percent in 2017 to 28 percent in 2018 of the total annual budget for TB.
The Head of State further recognized the sustained and unwavering support of cooperating partners to accelerate efforts towards achieving a TB free Zambia by 2030.
This was contained in a statement released to 5fm news by the Head of Media Relations, at the Ministry of Health Stanslous Ngosa.