Frontline voices: To be a transgender living with HIV in India

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
Shobha Shukla (left) and Amruta Soni (right)
Armed with a management degree in marketing, Amruta Soni is currently working in Patna as the state programme manager at National Coalition of PLHIV in India (NCPI) for the Vihaan project in Bihar. Today she confidently handles 15 partner NGOs, providing them with technical support on how to implement the programme and link people living with HIV (PLHIV) with Vihaan care and support centres.

[Call to register] Webinar: Are TB, malaria and Anti-Microbial Resistance declining fast enough to meet SDGs by 2030?

We welcome you to register for an exclusive media webinar on progress made (or lack of) towards ending TB, malaria and Anti-Microbial Resistance (AMR) by 2030 (or earlier). Governments have adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), one of which is to end TB and malaria by 2030 (SDG 3.3).

CNS at TB 2016 and AIDS 2016: Integrated responses are a must for achieving SDGs by 2030

[Read full report here] CNS onsite team led by Shobha Shukla (CNS Managing Editor) provided thematic conference coverage and focused its advocacy and communications around specific issues at the International TB Conference (TB 2016) and 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) held in Durban, South Africa.

Tuberculosis: Nigerians at risk due to lack of awareness

Chika Onyesi, CNS Correspondent, Nigeria

A call for collaborative TB-HIV treatment

Catherine Mwauyakufa, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
It is high time that there is a collaborative TB-HIV treatment if we are to have quality life for people living with HIV (PLHIV). Taking medication for HIV daily is already a burden and for TB co-infection the additional tablets to be swallowed by a patient daily become more than a mouthful. To understand the pill burden remember one day you went down with a common cold and had to take two or three tablets for a prescribed treatment time. The moment you got better you stopped the treatment without finishing the course.

India needs to work aggressively to combat MDR-TB

Pritha Roy Choudhury, CNS Correspondent, India
TB has been, and still is, a global menace. With nearly one-third of the population infected with Mycobacterium Tuberculosis, TB is now killing more people each year than HIV, with Asia and Africa contributing to the maximum number of fatalities. As per the latest treatment regimen available, the treatment period for MDR-TB has been halved from the current 24 months to 9-12 months, thus not only reducing the cost of treatment but also improving adherence and hence upping the cure rate.

More advocacy and collaboration needed to tackle the HIV-TB co-epidemic

Urvashi Prasad, CNS Correspondent, India
A person living with HIV (PLHIV) is 26 to 31 times more likely to develop active TB as compared to someone who is HIV negative because of a considerably weakened immune system. It is estimated that of the 1.2 million HIV deaths in 2014, one in three was attributable to HIV-TB co-infection. HIV and TB are a deadly combination. In fact, TB is able to spread more easily in PLHIV. This is why extra-pulmonary TB is more common in TB-HIV patients.

Tackling the HIV-TB co-infection

Josephine Chinele, CNS Correspondent, Malawi
Last week global health professionals, TB and HIV specialists, researchers, civil society members and communities affected by TB and/or HIV deliberated at TB 2016 (followed by AIDS 2016) in Durban, South Africa. These two conferences were convened by the International AIDS Society (IAS).

Double up efforts to fight the double epidemic of TB-HIV

Alice Tembe, CNS Correspondent, Swaziland
It is no news that the TB bacteria and the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) together make up a co-epidemic that presents compounded complications in patients who host them, healthcare workers who have to manage the diseases, advocates and researchers fighting for answers as well as communities who have to cope with the disastrous effects of the co-epidemics.

India takes measure to check prevent HIV/TB infection

Aarti Dhar, CNS Correspondent, India
[First published in Theindiasaga.com]
Bearing a very high burden of highly infection Tuberculosis (TB) and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), India is in the process of implementing more effective measures to check the spread of the two deadly diseases. The National Aids Control Organisation will soon put in place measures to control air-borne infection at Anti-Retroviral Treatment (ART) Centres and associated HIV care setting.

Hope on the horizon for people living with MDR-TB

Catherine Mwauyakufa, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
More efficacious medications are needed in the successful treatment of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) if we are to realise the goal of ending  TB by 2030, as envisaged in the sustainable development goals (SDGs). World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 480,000 new MDR-TB cases were noted in 2014. Also treatment success rate stands at 50% globally. Something urgent needs to be done to save lives of people with MDR-TB.

COPUA engages political leaders on Termination of Pregnancy bill

Mercy Chaluma, CNS Correspondent, Malawi
[First published in mbc.mw]
The Coalition for the Prevention of Unsafe abortion COPUA has called on political leaders in the country to help it in the passing of the termination of pregnancy bill which is expected to be tabled in parliament soon. Policy Advisor for the Organisation Luke Tembo made the call in Mangochi during a workshop to sensitise political leaders on the problem of unsafe abortion and the need to pass the revised bill so that women are able to access safe abortion at public health facilities.

Govt. geared to fight TB in prisons

Mercy Chaluma, CNS Correspondent, Malawi
[First published in mbc.mw]
Government is set to start screening all prisoners for Tuberculosis – TB in all the prisons of the country as one way of eliminating the disease. According to Minister of Health Dr Peter Kumpalume, the initiative is coming at a time when statistics shows that 50% of prisoners in Malawi have TB which translates to the highest number of concentration of TB patients in the country.