Philippines Joins International Alliance to Combat Tuberculosis

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The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced on Thursday, February 8, that the Philippines, along with Indonesia, Nigeria, and Poland, has launched the Alliance of Countries in the Fight Against Tuberculosis (“Alliance”). The launch took place on February 2 at the Permanent Mission of Indonesia to the United Nations in New York City.

Ambassador Antonio Lagdameo, the permanent representative of the Philippines to the United Nations, expressed gratitude to Indonesia for leading this important initiative. He also highlighted the Philippines’ achievements in combating tuberculosis (TB).

As a staunch advocate in the fight against TB, the Philippines has always welcomed every opportunity and initiative aimed at ending this top infectious killer by 2030. This commitment is a national priority, as directed by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who has emphasized the urgency of the problem and the collective role of stakeholders, partners, organizations, and individuals in this fight,” Lagdameo remarked.

From 2017 to 2022, the Philippines successfully identified and treated 2.1 million individuals with TB, surpassing pre-pandemic performance in case notifications. This improvement can be attributed to the implementation of the TB Adaptive Plan, which provided guidelines to ensure uninterrupted TB services during the pandemic.

Ambassador Lagdameo also highlighted the potential contributions of the Philippines to the Alliance and the global efforts towards TB elimination. “Through this Alliance, we stand in solidarity with all members, states, and partners, fostering collaboration to strengthen implementation commitments crucial for TB control. This includes supporting initiatives that enhance countries’ access to new technologies and drugs, such as the TB vaccine, while sharing our own innovations in TB management,” Lagdameo stated.

The Philippines aims to pool resources, knowledge, and expertise to effectively combat TB. Central to this endeavor is the emphasis on translating commitments into tangible actions, such as improving healthcare infrastructure and enhancing diagnostic capabilities.

The Alliance of Countries in the Fight Against Tuberculosis was established in September 2023 to initiate activities that raise awareness, maintain focus, and encourage concrete measures in addressing the issue of tuberculosis. Led by Indonesia, with the Philippines, Nigeria, and Poland as co-chairs, the Alliance currently has 21 members, including countries heavily affected by TB, such as China, Mongolia, Peru, Thailand, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam.

This global collaboration signifies a collective determination to tackle the challenges posed by tuberculosis. By joining forces, countries can share best practices, exchange knowledge, and work together towards achieving the goal of a TB-free world. The Philippines is proud to be part of this Alliance and is committed to making significant contributions to the fight against tuberculosis on a global scale.

Together, we can make a difference and save countless lives from the grip of this deadly disease.

Source: The Manila Times

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