Project HOPE Executive Vice President Chris Skopec visited Uzbekistan in May to meet with government officials on current TB control interventions and to deliver an opening address at the conference on the End TB Strategy and Patient-Centered Care.
Project HOPE has been providing humanitarian and technical assistance to Uzbekistan since 1992 through delivery of crucial medications and medical supplies valued at over $100 million and, since 1999, through interventions in maternal and child health, HIV and TB control. Currently, HOPE is implementing a five-year, $7.6 million USAID TB Control Program to provide more effective and accessible TB prevention, diagnosis and treatment for all, including vulnerable populations. The program supports the National TB Program (NTP) in strengthening the health system’s human and institutional capacity, improving interagency coordination and cooperation, and increasing access to TB diagnosis and treatment.
During his visit, Mr. Skopec met with the leadership of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Uzbekistan (MOH), NTP, the United States Embassy, USAID, and other stakeholders. In addition, Mr. Skopec delivered an opening address at the Conference on the End TB Strategy and Patient Centered Care organized in Bukhara by Project HOPE and NTP with support from USAID. The conference brought together the world’s leading experts in TB control from the United States, Uzbekistan, South Africa, Russia and Denmark, and provided an unprecedented forum for effective knowledge sharing among nearly 300 healthcare providers, policy makers, and government officials who participated in the conference’s plenary and training sessions.
“This conference reflects Uzbekistan’s impressive commitment in seeking to strengthen capacity to combat TB through patient-centered approaches,” noted Mr. Skopec, “but combatting this disease is no easy task for any country. To be successful, all of us -- whether we represent governments, international donors, the private sector, civil society, healthcare providers, or patients – must actively be engaged in this fight.”
Project HOPE's TB control interventions – implemented jointly with national partners with financial support from USAID, the Global Fund and other donors – have contributed to a 22 percent reduction of TB mortality rates in all five Central Asian countries, and to a treatment success rate of 87 percent in the pilot areas.
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