TORONTO, Sept. 21, 2018 /CNW/ - On September 26th, the United Nations General Assembly, for the first time ever, will host a ground breaking High-Level Meeting (HLM) on TB. This remarkable opportunity has the potential to generate the political will needed to stamp out TB. Governments will come together to endorse a TB response to end TB by 2030.
Now more than ever, Canada's leadership towards ending TB is very much needed. Towards heightening TB awareness for all Canadians, recently, RESULTS Canada's grassroots Greater Toronto Area volunteers, the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, and Toronto Public Health presented a free talk/screening of the South African feature-length film, The Lucky Specials.
At this moment, a tuberculosis global health crisis takes place in Canada's far north. While the Global Fund and United States government are the main external donors for TB, this year, Canada announced $27.5 million over 5 years to address the burden of TB with the intention to eliminate TB across Inuit Nunangat by 2030. But, now, we need all Canadians to call upon Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to attend the HLM to demonstrate how serious we are about eradicating TB—this time, for good.
We need to close the gap in TB prevention, diagnosis, and treatment. TB is curable—yet, 1.8 million people globally die of TB each year. Inuit communities have an infection rate 300 times that of non-Indigenous Persons. At home in Canada, TB outbreaks can still be seen in communities from Nain, Newfoundland to other Inuit regions of Canada. TB is even more devastating in communities with high rates of HIV.
Canada's current championing of human rights and health equity in Inuit communities may pave the way for those who may not be heard due to poverty and stigma. Deadlier drug resistant forms of TB continue to spread widely while most treatments still have dreadful side effects. However, when governments and the public make a concerted push, TB, ultimately, can be eradicated. It's time for us to unite and finally make this happen.
SOURCE RESULTS Greater Toronto Area (GTA)
For further information: Jocelyn Lee, [email protected]