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18% of tuberculosis deaths in Maharashtra are from Mumbai

During the state assembly, the government observed that 3,662, of the total 20,213 TB deaths in Maharashtra over the last three years, were from Mumbai.

mumbai Updated: Mar 01, 2018 12:53 IST
Surendra Gangan
Surendra Gangan
Hindustan Times
mumbai,health,maharashtra
Public Health minister Deepak Sawant said a panel will examine if the rise in the pollution level is directly corelated to TB deaths in Maharashtra.(Representational photo)

Of the total number of people that die in the state due to tuberculosis (TB) every year , 18% are from Mumbai.

During the state assembly, the government observed that 3,662, of the total 20,213 tuberculosis patients that died in the state over the last three years, were from Mumbai. Of the 3.77 lakh patients diagnosed with TB in the last three years, 71,368 are from Mumbai.

Admitting that the numbers are alarming, the state government has announced its decision to step up preventive measures by considering to set up a research centre. It will also upgrade its drive for spreading awareness and counselling among citizens.

Public Health minister, Deepak Sawant, said that a panel will also examine if the rise in the pollution level is directly corelated to the spread of the disease.

While raising the issue, members of the opposition as well as the ruling bench pressed for immediate measures to eradicate the disease.

Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA, Parag Alwani, said that the disease is spread at a high rate owing to the density of population and overcrowding in the trains and buses.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader, Ajit Pawar, said that the high rate of pollution due to the ongoing development works in the city has upped the chances of air-borne diseases. He also raised questions over the reduction in the budgetary allocation to combat the disease.

BJP MLA Rahul Aher said that the government has been following the protocol set by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for other countries, but it might not be the best bet for Maharashtra, owing to geographical and demographical differences.

“We had a state-of-the-art research center at JJ Hospital in the past. The research center needs to be revived if the government really wants to combat the disease effectively,” he said.

Sawant said that the city has 24 district TB centres and 59 TB units for the treatment on the disease. He said that Culture and DST (Department of Science and Technology) laboratories have been operational at JJ and Hinduja hospitals.Three others will be made operation within the next six months at GTB Hospital, Metropolis Healthcare and SRL Limited, he said.

He said that the government will also consider setting up a research centre at the JJ Hospital.

Responding to underspending of the outlay earmarked for TB treatment, Sawant said that the corrective steps will be taken. “The state has allocated Rs7621 crore and BMC has the outlay of Rs2138 crore to combat the disease. We will ensure that the maximum of the allocation will be spent in this year,” he said.

First Published: Mar 01, 2018 00:52 IST