Comilla slum dwellers exposed to TB

Sordid environment in the 70 slums of Comilla City Corporation (CCC) area has kept their 1.5 lakh dwellers at risk of being attacked with tuberculosis.
CCC sources said these slum dwellers live in damp and dirty places, which creates exposure to TB and other respiratory diseases.
According to doctors, risk of being attacked with TB is high among those living in such squalid environment.
According to sources in the Urban Partnership Poverty Reduction Project, among these slum dwellers, most are rickshaw pullers, pushcart drivers, venders, cobblers and footpath hawkers, maids and beggars.
They live in congested shanties amid acute shortage of toilets, crisis of pure drinking water and water stagnancy caused by rains.
Sources at the local health department and BRAC offices said the number of TB affected patients in the district is now 3,507.
Presence of TB germs in them could be confirmed following examination of cough of 47,929 people.
Salma Akhtar, 25, who was attacked with TB, told this correspondent at Chartha BRAC centre in Comilla that she was getting cured after taking medicine for the last six months.
District civil surgeon Dr Abul Kalam Siddique said tuberculosis is no longer a critical disease.
If cough continues for more than three weeks, it needs to be examined.
TB attacked persons are to take medicine for six months, he added.
BRAC workers are working to motivate the TB affected people to take medicine regularly.
The district health department is distributing medicine free of cost among the TB patients.
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