The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control NCDC has called for more sustained efforts to tackle tuberculosis knowing that Nigeria accounts for about 11% of the global gaps of TB incident cases globally.
Director-General of the agency, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu made the call at the ministerial briefing organized by the National TB and Leprosy  Control (NTBLCP) and the Stop TB partnership Programme In Nigeria, in Abuja yesterday to commemorate the 2021 World TB Day.
The DG said the NCDC  felicitates with the National TB and Leprosy Control Programme (NTBLCP) on its World TB day Commemoration with the Theme: “The Clock is Ticking to end TB in Nigeria” and the Slogan as “That Cough fit be TB, not COVID, Check am ooo”.
He said the focus of this year’s theme and slogan was timely in view of the Covid-19 Pandemic. Because the two diseases share similar symptoms, they need to have an appropriate diagnosis for both diseases to determine the actual cause of any cough is crucial.
 Dr  Chikwe maintained that a patient may be infected by both COVID-19 and Tuberculosis hence The “clock is ticking” is a call for all stakeholders, communities, and well-spirited individuals to join hands with the National TB and Leprosy Control Programme and the Federal Ministry of Health in the fight against Tuberculosis just as Nigeria accounts for 11% of the global gaps between TB incidence and notified cases.
He, therefore, called on all donor agencies, the government of Nigeria and other Spirited individuals to support the NTBLCP with the required funding needed to combat this deadly disease. Adding that NCDC which is saddled with the mandate for Disease outbreak reporting and surveillance is glad to collaborate with the National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Programme to find the missing cases with immediate reporting for the NTBLCP intervention, as such, the collaboration to improve TB surveillance as a case-based disease using surveillance outbreak response and analysis system (SORMAS) is highly needed.
He further congratulated the NTBLCP for the laudable achievements so far in the fight against tuberculosis and a successful week-long World TB day commemoration while looking forward to a more rewarding collaboration in the future.

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