Tuberculosis reemerged as an important public health threat after the breakdown of the Soviet Union, and its burden remains high in Tajikistan. The country also has one of the highest drug resistant TB burdens in the region. Project HOPE has ongoing programs with the goal of decreasing the burden of TB in Tajikistan by ensuring universal access to timely and quality diagnosis and treatment of all forms of TB. One innovative program involves using Global Positioning Satellite devices to closely monitor the appropriateness and efficiency of transportation and maintenance dedicated to timely delivery of sputum samples to testing labs.
Project HOPE's began working in Tajikistan in 2001 with the Healthy Family Program. Leading a group of international NGOs implementing the Healthy Family Program, a large-scale maternal, child, and reproductive health initiative, across three of the largest and most populous countries in Central Asia, Project HOPE was able to broker a national and regional policy in support of the plan. As a result, management of childhood illness, control of diarrheal diseases, pneumonia case management, immunization and sexually transmitted infections programs benefited from the employment of international standards in infection prevention.
Policy changes enabled improvements in contraceptive flow, aiding family planning activities, as well as in health facility levels, increasing the capacity of physicians to provide quality maternal and newborn care. Fathers, mothers, grandmothers, teachers, health providers and religious leaders led by local authorities and NGOs, participated in health promotion activities and disseminated health education messages within their communities and across generations.
In 2004, HOPE began working on a region-wide initiative to improve the effectiveness of the health system in response to Tuberculosis (TB). The project's objectives were to increase the utilization and successful completion of the Directly Observed Therapy-Short Course (DOTS), improve the management of the TB control system, develop approaches to bring DOTS to wider populations, improve laboratory support of DOTS and facilitate TB policy and appropriate practices through dissemination of results and lessons learned.
From 2001 - 2014, Project HOPE worked with the U.S. Department of State and generous corporate partners to improve the quality of care for vulnerable populations in Tajikistan by helping alleviate the severe shortage of basic pharmaceuticals and medical supplies by providing needed oncology, psychiatric, diabetes and infectious disease medicines.
Every year, in Tajikistan, a country where the burden of TB is very high, as many as 600 children become ill with this infectious but curable disease. To receive treatment, the majority of these children have to be hospitalized and, as a result, separated from their families for months at a time. For these little patients, a hospital stay is a very long, lonely, and scary experience.
Project HOPE’s TB experts are among the thousands of delegates from around the globe gathering at the annual Union World Lung Conference on Lung Health, this year held in Guadalajara, Mexico.
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