More funds needed to fight TB in Africa


Governments and donors need to allocate more financial resources for the provision of sustainable, reliable, lifesaving and equitable health services to save millions of people affected by tuberculosis (TB) every year.

A new report by Global Fund says more than 10 million people in the world contract TB every year and nearly 40 per cent of those go untreated and unreported, which spreads it further.

Chairman of the Kenya TB Caucus and Africa TB Caucus Stephen Mule said that to resolve these issues, more funds need to be allocated in the fight against TB and more so at the preventive level.  

Speaking at a meeting to discuss how to raise funds for the healthcare under the Big Four Agenda, Mr Mule who is also Matungulu MP, said Kenya needs to explore new ways to financing universal healthcare to boost the healthcare kitty to fight HIV, TB and Malaria.

“Some 16 out of 30 high tuberculosis (TB) burden countries globally are in Africa and nearly three million of the 10.4 million people who contracted TB in 2017 live in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Mule.

Statistics show that new HIV infections among children declined by eight per cent in the past two years and 52 per cent of children living with HIV are on ARV treatment.

Mule said that in Kenya the Big Four Agenda focuses on increasing the number of people with health cover from 16 million to 25 million and cover for all in consequent years.

He said that the Global Fund is a co-financing mechanism from which governments in sub Saharan Africa including Kenya are beneficiaries of, as the burden of HIV, TB and malaria being high in the region.

Between 2002 and 2017, programmes funded by the global fund have saved 27 million lives in the world with 65 per cent of the programmes being implemented in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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