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Posts tagged "Moldova"
Changing the face of TB through the involvement of communities

Changing the face of TB through the involvement of communities

“Empower civil society and community representatives to generate change from the bottom up”, this is one of the key messages we took away from a session organised by the TB Europe Coalition and WHO Europe on “Community-driven solutions to the MDR-TB epidemic in the European region” at the Union Conference in Barcelona. Indeed, as civil society speaks the language of the people affected by the disease, and is well placed to take over numerous functions at the local level such as case detection, patient support, prevention activities, especially targeting affected communities, its capacities should be strengthened. There is no doubt that by providing basic services, making patients’ voices heard and spreading awareness about TB, civil society can be of great added value to national efforts. Speakers from civil society from Tajikistan and Moldova as well as the National TB Programmes of Bulgaria and Russia presented best practices in the involvement of communities and civil society in TB care. It was widely agreed that a clear shift from perceptions of TB as a medical condition to a human and social problem was urgently needed, especially in the way that conferences and trainings are organised for medical and programme staff. An equal More…

Story from Moldova: TB for 20 years with no hope of recovery

Story from Moldova: TB for 20 years with no hope of recovery

Today we’re sharing a story from TBEC members Act for Involvement, who are based in Moldova. If you’d like to share a story of your work or experience with TB then please do get in touch with bruce.warwick@results.org.uk. Chased by tuberculosis for more than twenty years, Igor (42), from the small town Anenii Noi in Moldova, lives in dark hopelessness for a recovery. His wife has passed away and his children have been taken to a specialised institution. Igor, who now lives with extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), was first infected when he was 20 and was serving a prison sentence in Russia. In 2001, after being released and settling in Moldova, Igor relapsed. Four years ago he learnt that he had multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB). ‘So many times I started the treatment and then gave up because it was so hard, I was feeling better and had to work in order to feed my family’, recalls Igor. Last January, doctors found out that Igor’s wife and his two children, a young boy (11) and a young girl (9), all had TB and were all started on treatment. Despite these efforts, the children’s mother and Igor’s wife died just four months later. More…

TB civil society demand zero TB deaths, new infections, suffering and stigma!

TB civil society demand zero TB deaths, new infections, suffering and stigma!

The International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease started off with a bang today in Paris as civil society actors stormed the stage demanding faster progress towards eliminating TB and a target of zero TB deaths. The group of advocates brought so much needed energy and, importantly, some much needed urgency to the room as they called for greater ambition in the work done in attempting to eliminate tuberculosis. TB Europe Coalition members were at the forefront of the mobilisation, with representatives from Moldova, Macedonia, Romania, Russia, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, France, Belgium, the UK and the Ukraine all taking to the stage to make their voices heard and make their national representatives take note. After advocates from across Europe, Central Asia and from most corners of the world had stormed the stage, Colleen Daniels from Treatment Action Group made an impassioned speech challenging those in the room to aim higher in the fight against TB. More ambition, like that is seen in the HIV community, is critical in order to get to: zero TB deaths, zero new TB infections, zero suffering and stigma. The mobilisation ended with the audience taking to their feet and applauding to the calls for zero TB deaths. More…

European TB Advocate Meets U.S. Policy Makers

European TB Advocate Meets U.S. Policy Makers

Last month, Moldovan TB advocate Oxana Rucsineanu travelled to Washington D.C. to build support among U.S. policy makers for the global fight against tuberculosis. Oxana was on TB treatment for three years – one year first for regular TB then 2 years for multi-drug resistant TB. While Oxana is now TB-free, the airborne disease is still the focus of her life. With other TB patients, Oxana founded the Moldova Society Against Tuberculosis to advocate for partnership and cooperation between TB patients, medical staff, and authorities.  Her husband, Pavel, continues to live with an extensively drug-resistant form of TB that doctors in Moldova are struggling to treat. Their heartrending story was recently featured on National Public Radio in the United States. She is also a Here I Am Campaign ambassador, bringing the voices of those affected by TB into dialogues around the world on the importance of funding the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. As a Here I Am Ambassador, Oxana travelled to Washington D.C. to attend the RESULTS International Conference, where she connected with grassroots volunteers from around the U.S. working to urge their policy makers to scale up the fight against TB around the world. She also met with Congressmen and their staff More…

We Can Heal: Drug-resistant tuberculosis in children

We Can Heal: Drug-resistant tuberculosis in children

To mark World TB Day 2013, the Sentinel Project on Paediatric Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis and Treatment Action Group released a collection of 30 stories from 30 countries that identify what the TB community needs to do to achieve zero TB deaths, new infections, and suffering. As the release states, the collection of stories illustrate the problems we collectively face with drug-resistant TB (DR-TB) in children. The stories reveal the widespread problems of prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of DR-TB while also bearing witness to the courage of the children who are fighting for their lives against DR-TB. Over the past 10 years, 40,000 cases of childhood TB were reported in the EU alone, indicating that TB in children remains a major challenge even with the European Region. A selection of the stories in the publication reflect this trend with stories from Moldova, Italy, Sweden, Belgium. All of the stories in this collection, both from within the EU and further afield, are testament to the work that remains to be done in ensuring that TB is eradicated once and for all and making sure that children across the world are able to live the carefree lives they deserve. Currently, children are going undiagnosed More…

TBEC Participates in the 2013 WHO Review of Moldova Program

TBEC Participates in the 2013 WHO Review of Moldova Program

Last month, Jonathan Stillo, a medical anthropologist and active member of the TBEC and the Romanian STOP TB Partnership, was part of the World Health Organization team as TBEC representative that reviewed Moldova’s TB program. This was an unusually long review of a small country, but there is so much happening in Moldova related to TB, that even with two weeks and three separate review teams, it was difficult to see everything. Moldova has one of the highest rates of new MDR-TB in new cases in the entire world. It is also the poorest country in the WHO European region, with almost one-third of the population living in absolute poverty.  TB is only one of the many health problems the country is struggling with including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and HIV/AIDS. An additional challenge Moldova faces is that Global Fund support for second line TB drugs to treat MDR-TB will end in 2014. The WHO review examined issues such as Moldova’s new community centers for fighting TB, a fully ambulatory MDR-TB pilot project, new treatment guidelines, and a nationwide roll-out of GeneXpert testing . Most of these developments are promising, but for TBEC, the most exciting news coming out of Moldova More…

TBEC meets with TB stakeholders in Moldova

TBEC meets with TB stakeholders in Moldova

From 12 until 16 August 2012, Paul Sommerfeld from TB Alert UK, Fanny Voitzwinkler from Global Health Advocates France and Cristina Enache from Romanian Angel Appeal met with TB advocates in Chisinau and Balti, Moldova. Our visit was facilitated by PAS: the Centre for Health Policies and Studies (NGO Principal Recipient of the Global Fund for TB and HIV) and Speranta Terrei (a community-based organisation based in Balti working with TB patients). The main objectives of the TBEC visit were to inform local advocates about the TB Europe Coalition, EU advocacy, the Berlin Declaration and the M/XDR-TB Action Plan, to explore how TBEC might assist with the advocacy concerns of Moldovan NGOs and draw Moldovan TB advocates into TBEC. 13 August: preliminary meetings – Chisinau During the first day of the visit, the TBEC met with the Centre for Health Policies and Studies (PAS) Director Viorel Soltan (former Deputy Minister of Health, former GFATM board member for the European region and current Chair of the Global Fund Finance and Operational Performance Committee) and his staff to get an understanding of the local dynamics when it comes to TB care and control, the impact of the GF cancellation of Round 11 More…

Voices in the fight against the European epidemic

The TB Europe Coalition and the ACTION Project are giving TB a ‘human face’ in their report ‘Tuberculosis – Voices in the fight against the European epidemic’ by looking behind the statistics to focus on the every-day challenges faced by TB patients and their carers in the WHO Europen Region. TB is a global epidemic, causing devastating loss of life and hampering economic productivity. It is also a European problem, where TB rates have been on the rise over the past few decades. This report seeks to reenergise the fight against TB by telling the human side of the disease; giving a voice to the individuals and communities who have long been represented in numbers and figures. In these pages, patients, doctors, advocates and healthcare workers from seven European countries – Georgia, Latvia, Moldova, Romania, Russia, UK and Ukraine – tell of their experiences. “TB takes people out of the workforce and puts them into a state of poverty. They are not just faceless statistics, they are mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and they are suffering.” – Jonathan Stillo, medical anthropologist, Romania Those interviewed address the need to sustain political will and financial investment as well as emphasizing how More…

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