Live TB-Free campaign concludes at YMCA Buwambo, students urged to embrace good practice

Buwambo, (UG): The University Live TB Free Campaign, an initiative by National TB & Leprosy Program (NLTP) under the Ministry of Health aimed at eradicating tuberculosis (TB) today came to a fruitful conclusion drawing crowds from the different varsities and institutions across the country over the last nine days.

The campaign which started on Monday, June 03, at Kumi University in eastern Uganda had its last day on Wednesday, June 12 at YMCA Comprehensive – Buwambo Campus where activists and officials from the Health Ministry rallied students to embrace the practice of testing for HIV if Uganda is to achieve its goal of ending the disease by 2023.

Highlighting the importance of the initiative, the speakers of the day who included comedians of Madrat and Chiko emphasized self-reflection and the acceleration of efforts by NTLP in combatting the TB epidemic.

The campaign aligns with Uganda’s ambitious goal to end TB by 2030, a priority supported strongly by the government and the Ministry of Health (MOH).

“We are committed to steering all stakeholders towards achieving this goal and fulfilling our international commitments. The University Live TB Free Campaign plays a vital role in this collective effort,” said a representative from the MOH.

Madrat and Chiko speaking to students of YMCA Buwambo

A key focus of the “School Live TB Free” campaign is to help people identify the signs and symptoms of TB, such as persistent cough, fever, night sweats, and weight loss. The campaign urges anyone experiencing these symptoms to seek medical advice immediately to receive timely and effective treatment.

Officials urged students not to isolate infectious students and to avoid poor ventilation & congestion in residential dormitories & lack of treatment as this propagates the TB outbreak in universities and institutions which attract large numbers.

Health workers, health centre staff, and other community members who have been actively involved in the campaign provided support and encouragement to those affected by TB as they continue to play a crucial role in spreading awareness and educating the public about the disease.

The initiative concluded fruitfully with positive feedback from students and faculty members who expressed their commitment to supporting the campaign and spreading the message within their communities.

YMCA Students who attended the final day of Live-TB Free campaign at Buwambo campus

The 2024 campaign started out at Kumi University and then proceeded to IUIU-Mbale Campus, Kabale University, Bishop Stuart University in Mbarara, YMCA-Kampala campus to Nakawa Vocational Training College and finally to YMCA-Buwambo campus where it summed up with positives to achieve its objectives.

Throughout, the campaign featured a comprehensive suite of materials designed to guide the community on recognizing TB symptoms and taking appropriate action. These materials include posters, banners, videos, radio spots, stickers, flip charts, brochures, and talking point booklets, all tailored to disseminate critical information effectively.

About the Live-TB Free Campaign

The Ministry of Health, through the Health Promotion, Education & Communication Department and the National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Program, in collaboration with various partners, developed an inter-university concept for TB awareness and mobilization known as the University Live TB Free Campaign, designed as a flagship TB control programme of USAID’s Social and Behavior Change Activity in collaboration with PEPFAR and the Global Fund.

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