Yes! We can end TB: Tibetans in India observe World TB Day

Dharamshala: Every year on 24th of March people across the world observe World Tuberculosis (TB) day. Under the central theme of this year’s TB day titled “Yes!We can end TB”, Tibetans spread across India observed the day from awareness to activities by holding a panel discussion to poster competitions, community engagement to educational activities. Marking the day, TibetTV in coordination with the Department of Health broadcasted a panel discussion on TB disease problem and prevention, and a way forward to become a TB free Tibetan community. The panel featured Dr.Sonam Wangmo from Tibetan Medical & Astro Institute and Dr Sonam Topgyal from Delek hospital. Click here to watch the panel discussion.

Furthermore, hospitals and health field staff situated across Tibetan settlements in India conducted various TB awareness programs. Staff nurse Passang from Tso Jhe Tibetan hospital in Bylakuppe presented a health talk on TB at Tibetan Children Village (TCV) School in Bylakuppe. Following which, TSO Jhe hospital organized a picture competition on TB transmission and prevention amongst secondary and higher secondary (class 6 to 12) students. Likewise, Mundgod DTR hospital organized a basketball match amongst a team from Tibetan youth in Mundgod settlement and a team from Class 12 students from Sambhota Tibetan School in the settlement. Prior to the basketball match, Dr. Tenzin Passang of the DTR hospital spoke about TB underlying the prevention and promotion of public awareness on the disease. Led by Executive Secretary of the DTR hospital Ms. Sonam Lhamo and the team distributed TB information brochure and hand banner with End TB message. Similarly, the Tibetan hospital in Mainpat undertook a series of TB awareness programs in schools, within community members and in the monastery. Along with a talk series followed by a question and answer session.

While in Kollegal Dhondeling Tibetan settlement, Dr.Tashi Phuntsok from DVT hospital addressed the community members on TB signs and symptoms, prevention and medication in conjunction with the ongoing month-long prayer session at the Phodrang.  Over 360 community members were gathered during the time.

Focusing on the monastic community, Hunsur Phende hospital led by Executive Secretary Tenzin Lhawang accompanied by TB by Dr.Tenzin Chonyi created awareness on TB for monks at Zongkhar Choedhey monastery. While giving a talk on TB, Dr.Chonyi educated monks on TB causes, symptoms, transmission, risk factors and treatment. He highlighted the significance of prevention and timely reaching out for tests and treatment, if infected.

In the northeastern region, including Miao, Tezu, Tenzingang, Ravangla and Tuting, a series of TB awareness activities were carried out in schools and monasteries.  Targeting the population identified as most at risk of TB within the community, health field nurses presented talks and poster competitions on TB. Furthermore, health field staffs facilitated an interactive discussions to engage and encourage interactions on TB.