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08/03/2017: Testing and treatment for TB and HIV are available for free at all City of Joburg clinics
08 March 2017
The City of Johannesburg has embarked on a wide-ranging campaign to create awareness of Tuberculosis (TB) and HIV/AIDS by screening patients for free at all the City’s clinics.

We will also be conducting community outreach initiatives.

This initiative will continue until the end of April 2017, and will reach its peak on Friday the 24th of March 2017, when the City will join the global community in commemorating annual World TB Day.

The Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) for Health and Social Development in the City of Johannesburg, Dr Mpho Phalatse, says Joburgers must be aware of the fact that TB can be completely cured if patients follow the treatment regimen for the prescribed period, depending on the type of infection.

“Testing and treatment for TB and HIV are available for free at all City clinics. We urge communities to encourage families and friends to visit clinics if they notice the tell-tale TB symptoms. The testing and treatment will remain free beyond the completion of the awareness campaign in April.”

“It is equally important to provide ongoing support to TB patients and to assist them and ensure that they continue with the treatment until they are cured,” says MMC Phalatse, who will be leading the awareness campaign.

An important part of this year’s outreach will be to find the “missing patients” who were diagnosed but did not commence or continue with their treatment programme. Our Health Promoters will provide special attention to residents living in hostels and informal settlements, as well as to miners, the elderly, children, immune-compromised individuals and health care workers. These population groups are often the most affected, and yet the most neglected in terms of screening and treatment.

Did You Know?

• TB is an infectious disease that is spread from person to person through the air. It affects mostly the lungs but can also have an impact on other parts of the body.
• The most recent figures reported by Stats SA confirm that TB is still the “number one killer” in the country, responsible for almost 40 000 mortalities every year.
• According to the WHO Global TB Report 2016, South Africa reported 454 000 new TB cases in 2015, making it the country with the 6th highest incidence of TB in the world – surpassed by India, Indonesia, China, Pakistan and Nigeria. Of the 454 000 reported cases, an estimated 60-73% are co-infected with HIV/AIDS.
• TB symptoms include a persistent cough that continues for more than two weeks; a fever that lasts for longer than 14 days; unexplained weight loss; drenching night sweats and sudden fatigue among children.
• The spread of TB can be prevented by covering your nose and mouth when sneezing; by coughing into your elbow; by ensuring your house is properly ventilated; by living a healthy lifestyle, with regular exercise as well as following a balanced diet.

TB Symptoms:
Adults Children
Cough of 2 weeks or more OR of any duration if HIV positive Cough of 2 weeks or more which is not improving with treatment
Fever of more than 2 weeks Persistent fever of more than 2 weeks
Unexplained weight loss > 1.5kg in a month Documented weight loss or failure to thrive
Drenching night sweats Fatigue (Less playful and or always tired)

What the City is doing:

• Intensifying awareness and screening campaigns in all wards until the end of April 2017.
• Dialogues are taking place with leaders in civil society, churches, the taxi industry and educators in schools.
• Conversations with family members of individuals who are undergoing TB treatment have been prioritised.
• Providing TB treatment to infected individuals, which is to be taken every day for the prescribed period until cured, and at the same time, preventing the spread of TB to immediate family members, children, friends and the community.
• Advocating for communities not to stigmatise or separate people with TB but rather support them to take their treatment for the prescribed period to be cured.
• Supporting patients on TB treatment; encouraging them to complete their treatment so that they can be cured.
• Offering free testing and treatment for TB and HIV/AIDS in all the City’s clinics.

The number of TB cases in the City of Joburg has been steadily declining and we are committed to realising our vision of a healthy and working City. We are a caring government that will work tirelessly to ensure that all our residents have access to proper healthcare.

For more information please contact:
Nonhlakanipho Nedzamba
Stakeholder Manager: Office of the MMC – Health and Social Development – Dr Mpho Phalatse
Tel: (011) 407 – 6725 | Cell: 072 596 9508
E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Website: www.joburg.org.za

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Last Updated on 08 March 2017