A Successful Approach to Preventing TB among Migrant Workers in Tajikistan Shared with Central Asian Countries
A Successful Approach to Preventing TB among Migrant Workers in Tajikistan
Qurghon Teppa, Tajikistan, 21 June 2014 – During their visit to Qurghon Teppa, participants of the Regional Forum on Migration and TB from Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan learnt much of the ways and approaches of the USAID Dialogue on HIV and TB Project among migrants in Tajikistan. Heads of the Khatlon Department of Health and Social Protection, Migration Service and Director of the local TB Control Centre, as well as the head of the NGO Akhtari Baht – subcontractor of the USAID Dialogue Project in Qurghon Teppa – greeted the guests in the NGO’s office. Over the course of the meeting with Khatlon’s authorities, participants received recent updates on the epidemiology of TB infection and a situational update on migration in Qurghon Teppa. Also, they had an opportunity to ask questions on project implementation and talk to immediate beneficiaries – migrants with TB who receive services on TB treatment adherence support.
Then, the head of Akhtari Bakht introduced the participants to project achievements in terms of coverage, referral and detection of TB incidents. Since August 2012, the NGO has reached 5,082 migrants with information on TB prevention and referred 554 migrants with suspected TB symptoms for TB diagnostic, of which 34 TB cases were detected during a direct implementation of the USAID Dialogue on HIV and TB Project. Among 34 migrants with TB, five cases were revealed with MDR-TB and one with TB/HIV. Eleven migrants with TB successfully completed TB treatment with the support provided within the social programme of the USAID Dialogue on HIV and TB Project. The Kyrgyz and Kazakh delegations comprised of NGOs and staff representing IOM Bishkek as well as the personnel of PSI Bishkek and Almaty, said they were impressed by such a high level of engagement, collaboration, and interaction of all partners, including local authorities, health care providers and NGO staff within the running project.
This visit was also meant to provide the guests with the opportunity to meet community leaders and migrants at “Hoji Sharif” local community to receive their feedback about services and the USAID Dialogue on HIV and TB Project. Following the meeting, Akhtari Bakht’s outreach workers conducted a mini session on TB prevention using visual tools developed by IOM and the Tajik Ministry of Health and Social Protection. After the mini session, the project volunteers demonstrated a theatrical performance about a real life story of a migrant with TB, which was followed by quizzes on TB and migration by the outreach workers.
All the participants in the forum recognized the importance of regional events that provided a chance to exchange their knowledge and skills and explore opportunities of replicating best practices in other countries to reduce TB cases.
USAID is the leading American government agency building social and economic prosperity with the people of Central Asia.