End TB, leave no one be­hind, Davies says

Fiji Sun - - Nation - WAISEA NASOKIA NADI Edited by Naisa Koroi Feed­back: waisean@fi­jisun.com.fj

Let’s end TB and leave no one be­hind. That’s the chal­lenge Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary for Health and Med­i­cal Ser­vices, Philip Davis, put for­ward yes­ter­day to par­tic­i­pants of the 8th Tu­ber­cu­lo­sis Con­trol Meet­ing for the Pa­cific Is­lands at the Sof­i­tel Re­sort and Spa, De­na­rau.

He said: “We can­not deny the re­al­ity which lies be­fore us - TB is again be­com­ing a global emer­gency.

“As Pa­cific Is­lan­ders (in­clud­ing Fi­jians), we have many sim­i­lar­i­ties which binds us; his­to­ries, our reliance on the ocean, rich cul­tures and above all, our love for sports among other things. “We face the same threats, cli­mate change, vul­ner­a­bil­ity to nat­u­ral dis­as­ters, and disease bur­dens.”

Mr Davis be­lieves the three-day event would be fruit­ful for all those tak­ing part by tak­ing back prac­ti­cal so­lu­tions. To suc­cess­fully ad­dress TB, Mr Davies said: “We should also take bold steps to ad­dress the de­ter­mi­nants of health which gov­ern our sus­cep­ti­bil­ity to ac­quire this disease.

“This calls for multi-sec­to­rial in­volve­ment. This calls for ac­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion of Govern­ment, the pri­vate sec­tor as well as the com­mu­nity.

“Is­sues such as safe and af­ford­able hous­ing, food se­cu­rity, univer­sal ac­cess to health care, so­cial pro­tec­tion and the re­duc­tion of cat­a­strophic costs to pa­tients will need to be con­sis­tently ad­dressed in any play to erad­i­cate TB.

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