Tuberculosis, or TB, is an infectious bacterial disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which most commonly affects the lungs. It is transmitted from person to person via droplets from the throat and lungs of people with the active respiratory disease.
In healthy people, infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis often causes no symptoms, since the person’s immune system acts to “wall off” the bacteria. The symptoms of active TB of the lung are coughing, sometimes with sputum or blood, chest pains, weakness, weight loss, fever and night sweats. Tuberculosis is treatable with a six-month course of antibiotics.
TB is a major health issue in Armenia due to malnutrition and poor hygiene. The government of Armenia has done its utmost to contain and prevent TB infections. It helps with its limited resources by providing medication and diagnostic centers. AMF has complemented this effort by providing aid to the TB centers in Armenia and Kharabagh. Currently, there are one major TB hospitals in each of the Marzes and a total of 70 ambulatory cabinets in the surrounding villages. Doctors from the Marzes come to Yerevan for training and seminars.
Facts About TB in Armenia
In 2005, there were 2,000 new cases. In 2006, it has dropped to 1,500. Out of that number, 750 patients had children. Assuming each family has two children, it adds up to 1500 children exposed to TB. Dilijan can handle 500 children a year. The average stay is 50 days. As a result of our effort to double Dilijan’s capacity, it can now handle 1,000 children a year (still not enough). Guided by our mission, AMF has greatly reduced and prevented at least 500 children from being exposed or infected with TB
TB medication is provided by a global organization called GDDF. Germany donates the medication and GDDF distributes it to Armenia.
An organization called EURO TB donated 10 mobile florographs? to Armenia. They have one in each of the main hospitals in the 10 Marzs (counties). There are 70 TB cabinets all over Armenia. Groups of doctors from different cabinets come to Yerevan periodically for training and seminars on TB.