China’s first lady calls for global ef­fort against TB

China Daily (Canada) - - ACROSS AMERICA -

Peng Liyuan, wife of Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping, ad­dressed the United Na­tions Gen­eral Assem­bly high-level meet­ing on end­ing tu­ber­cu­lo­sis (TB) via video on Wed­nes­day, call­ing for a global ef­fort to put an end to the epi­demic.

Peng, who be­came the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion’s Good­will Am­bas­sador for TB and HIV/AIDS in 2011, shared her feel­ings and ex­pe­ri­ences with the at­ten­dees of the meet­ing, which took place at UN head­quar­ters in New York. She also shared touch­ing sto­ries of un­sung he­roes in China who have been self­lessly ded­i­cated to the cause of com­bat­ing TB.

Peng, who is also China’s Na­tional Am­bas­sador for TB Con­trol and Preven­tion, said that con­trol and preven­tion of the TB epi­demic in China has made rapid progress and its vic­tims are be­ing di­ag­nosed and treated in a more timely and ef­fec­tive fash­ion.

The progress has been made be­cause of the great im­por­tance that the Chi­nese govern­ment and the en­tire so­ci­ety have at­tached to the cause, as well as the en­thu­si­as­tic par­tic­i­pa­tion of about 700,000 vol­un­teers, she said.

In some parts of China, TB preven­tion has be­come one of the key tasks in the govern­ment’s poverty al­le­vi­a­tion pro­gram, said Peng.

Now, China has seen con­tin­u­ous in­creases of case de­tec­tion and cure rates for TB and de­creases in mor­bid­ity and mor­tal­ity, as many TB vic­tims in the coun­try have their lives re­newed, said Peng, adding that the aware­ness rate of TB con­trol and preven­tion knowl­edge has reached over 75 per­cent in China.

Thanks to joint ef­forts by gov­ern­ments, in­ter­na­tional or­ga­ni­za­tions, NGOs, spe­cial­ists and vol­un­teers, the con­trol and preven­tion of the tu­ber­cu­lo­sis epi­demic on the global level have scored sig­nif­i­cant achieve­ments, but mankind still faces se­vere chal­lenges in the fight, Peng said.

The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion has adopted an End TB Strat­egy, she said, urg­ing all coun­tries in the world to join hands and do their best to change the lives of the mil­lions of peo­ple who are af­fected by TB and end the global epi­demic.

The high-level meet­ing was chaired by Maria Fer­nanda Es­pinosa Garces, pres­i­dent of the 73rd ses­sion of the UN Gen­eral Assem­bly. A po­lit­i­cal dec­la­ra­tion on the con­trol and preven­tion of TB was en­dorsed at the meet­ing.

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