Health Minister Chitalu Chilufya
The K4.6million Drug Resistant Tuberculosis ward at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) whose construction was funded by the United States government has been officially commissioned.
Speaking at the commissioning Health Minister Chitalu Chilufya says drug resisting TB is a public major health challenge in Zambia and his Ministry records 62 000 cases every year.
Dr. Chilufya says the issue of drug resistant tuberculosis is emerging threat that must therefore be confronted aggressively.
He states that in order to combat drug resistant TB Zambia needs infrastructure and health care personnel and that the more reason the commissioning of the tuberculosis ward is a great milestone.
Speaking at the same event US ambassador Daniel Foote observed that Zambia has witnessed tremendous improvements in tuberculosis treatment.
Mr. Foote has taken note that over 85 percent of tuberculosis patients are now successfully completing their treatment.
He says the US government through USAID is honored to partner with Zambia in Tb control.
Meanwhile Chilufya has emphasized the need for occupational diseases and injuries in work places to be avoided.
And Dr Chilufya has noted the need for screening desks to be set up at work places as a way of ensuring early detection of non communicable diseases amongst workers in work places.
Speaking during the inauguration ceremony for Occupational health and safety Institute Board members in Lusaka, Dr Chilufya urged the newly appointed occupational and safety Institute board members to ensure that health of workers in various work places is safeguarded and prioritized.
Dr Chilufya says the occupational and safety Institute should set up screening desks at work places to ensure that people are screened .
The minister notes that workers will only be productive in good health hence it was imperative to invest in the health of citizens.
Dr Chilufya has noted with concern that mining companies on the Copperbelt Province had recorded a high number of tuberculosis because of Occupational hazards.
He has since stated that ensuring occupational health in work places will drive the Government’s agenda towards its goals.