Rising multi-drug resistance in patients suffering from tuberculosis, a debilitating infectious lung disease which mainly impacts the developing world, has led to a public health emergency in the southwest Pacific Island state of Papua New Guinea, according to state officials.
About eight years ago, 44-year-old Tilda Chihota was struck with tuberculosis which kept her bed-ridden for over six months at her rural home in Zimbabwe’s Mwenezi district, 144 kilometres southwest of Masvingo, the country’s oldest town.
Despite an increase in diagnosis times, South Africa is facing a growing drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB) burden as nationally there remains a large gap between the number of patients diagnosed with multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) and those who start treatment.
Twenty-three-year-old Haleema (not her real name) was not the first female patient at Srinagar’s Chest Diseases Hospital in the Indian state of Kashmir to try to run away.
For more than a decade after 1992, when Swazi gold miner Benson Maseko, 50, fell ill with chest pains and a nagging cough, he did not seek treatment.