STOP TB Partnership in Zimbabwe on Wednesday revealed that government had developed a new drug dispensing protocol for tuberculosis (TB) to ensure patients minimise movement during lockdown.
BY PRAISEMORE SITHOLE
The organisation’s chairperson Ronald Rungoyi said the Health ministry’s new drug dispensing programme ensured TB patients receive one and two months’ supply for intensive and continuation phases respectively.
“This move will help to reduce the frequency of patients visiting health facilities. We, therefore, advise all people on TB treatment, including those taking TB preventive therapy, to visit their nearest health facilities to collect their medicines. Furthermore, we call upon all our partners to ensure communities are aware that TB services at all health facilities remain uninterrupted during this lockdown period,” he said.
Rungoyi said it was critical to ensure household and community support systems for people with TB are strengthened and functioning.
“We encourage people on TB treatment to be cautious and follow prevention guidelines as shared by the World Health Organisation and the ministry which include good personal hygiene, frequent washing of hands with soap, avoiding touching the nose,” he said.
“People with COVID-19 or TB show similar symptoms such as cough, fever and difficulty in breathing. Both diseases also attack primarily the lungs, therefore, if you experience any of these symptoms, quickly visit your nearest health facility for screening.”