Only data-driven, evidence-based and enhanced technological interventions can fast-track the end of the Tuberculosis crisis in Nigeria.
This assertion by the World Health Organisation confirms the concerns that Nigeria may not reach its goal of ending TB in 2030 as a result of poor data processes, poor funding of interventions and low case finding.
The world health body, however, claims the country will see a significant decline in cases considering current efforts and the scale-up of past effective strategies.
Giving WHO’s verdict on how far Nigeria has gone in ending the disease, Dr Amos Awoniyi, the WHO Professional Officer on Tuberculosis insisted that the country was not on track.
Dr. Awoniyi made the assertions at an interactive webinar session with the media on ‘the Journey to End TB in Nigeria.
“We are not on the right track to achieve the 2030 target due to the high number of missing TB cases, there are a lot of cases in the community that are not detected, our case increase in 2021 was 60 percent and this is not good enough, ”
”To end TB in Nigeria, we must implement data-driven evidence-based and technology-enhanced interventions as contained in the NSP/lesson learnt. Mobilize adequate domestic resources and 70 per cent of the TB budget in 2021 was not funded”.
Although Nigeria has been judged not on track to end TB in 2030, in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Suvanand Sahu, the Deputy Executive Director of the Stop TB Partnership, said there is still hope if it aligns with the global plan.
The global plan according to Sahu clearly indicates priority areas and financial resources needed to fight the disease.
He said, “the total amount of funding needed is the equivalent of US$4 per year by everyone in the world for the next eight years.
“The economic return on this investment would amount to US$40 for every US$1 invested and as much as US$59 for every US$1 invested in low- and middle-income countries if the status quo is maintained.”