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A Noticeable Rise in the Number of New TB Cases of Across KSA

Unti-TBZiyad Maimish, Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Minister of Health for Preventive Medicine said that during 2010 4,349 new cases of tuberculosis () were discovered in the kingdom, a rate of 16.6 cases for every 100,000 people. During the occasion of World TB Day, Maimish mentioned that the rise is due to an increase in detections through the units of the National Anti-Tuberculosis Program, which operate across the country. He added that since 2000 and according to the World Health Organization (WHO) instructions, the Kingdom has been implementing a treatment strategy.

Maimish said “The strategy monitors patients on courses of medicine which involve hospital treatment and home treatment conducted by family members who are given training for the purpose. The national program had brought marked improvements in detection and treatment rates, with recovery rates going up from 71 percent in 2008 to 74.9 % in 2009”. He continued “Other persons, who come into contact with TB sufferers at home, school and in prisons, are also tested, and this had led to a fall to one percent in the rates of persons catching the illness through contact with patients.  Cases that do not respond to treatment are under 0.5 percent”.

Maimish mentioned that the program is under periodical supervision from the specialist body at the Ministry of Health. This allowed us to provide a computer information system that had been set up to monitor all detected cases individually.

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