New Delhi, Apr 24: The Health and Family Welfare Ministry has written to all states/UTs to ensure that the all the facilities under National TB Elimination Programme (NTEP) in the States and UTs remain fully functional in public interest and that the diagnosis and treatment of TB patients go on without any interruption notwithstanding the COVID-19 pandemic situation.
The comprehensive directives include providing one month of drugs at a time to all TB patients either newly diagnosed or currently on treatment. This includes both public and private sector TB patients, including drug-resistant TB patients. States/UTs are to ensure that patients with or without ID receive medicines at a heath facility convenient to them to prevent any form of interruption to treatment, an official release here said. Further, the directives state that even if the TB patient is unable to approach the health facility, arrangements should be made by the facility to deliver drugs at the patient's doorstep wherever possible.
Considering the challenges posed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown, the Ministry has issued orders to ensure sufficient quantity of drugs are procured and adequate supplies of drugs are available. The TB diagnostic and treatment services are fully operational in the States and UTs. (UNI)