TB Hits Tajikistan's Poorest

Southern Tajikistan is the focus of a widespread tuberculosis problem that appears closely linked to poverty.

TB Hits Tajikistan's Poorest

Southern Tajikistan is the focus of a widespread tuberculosis problem that appears closely linked to poverty.

Saturday, 4 April, 2009
Of the 16,000 cases of TB on the official records last year, over 6,000 were in the southern Khatlon region. Of the national total, 6,000 cases were new last year. Four thousands people died of the disease in Tajikistan.



Reporter Orzu Karim interviewed Marhaba, whose parents were too poor to send her for a check-up until the symptoms of TB were all too apparent. Then her mother borrowed to scrape together the money needed for treatment.



Even then, Marhaba had to contend with relatives who wanted her to take the treatment at home rather than endure what they saw as the stigma of going to the TB hospital. They thought it would make her less of a desirable marriage prospect.



Now undergoing treatment in hospital, Marhaba complains that people outside treat TB sufferers as dangerously contagious and turn away from them.
Tajikistan
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