‘Gujarat focused’ webinar organised to mobilise more corporates to join the fight against TB
Taking forward the Honourable Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi’s call to eliminate Tuberculosis (TB) in India by 2025, Apollo Tyres, in association with Confederations of Indian Industries (CII), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Federation of Kutch Industries’ Association (FOKIA) and The Union, organised a Gujarat focused webinar on TB free India. The webinar also had notable representations from the State Health Department and Central TB Division.
While the world is grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, Tuberculosis is another global burden that causes about 1.5 million deaths worldwide annually. It’s a known fact that India has the highest TB burden in the world, with a TB-related death being reported every two minutes. Gujarat, despite being one of the best performing states in the country for TB control, in the category of States with 50 lakh and above population, reported nearly 1.6 lakhs new incidences of TB last year; this number in the State is expected to go up to 2 lakhs cases this year.
Participating in the webinar Dr Kuldeep Singh Sachdeva, Deputy Director General, Central TB Division, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India, said “More corporates should adopt villages, communities around in their geographies and commit to work in eradicating TB. This initiative will certainly help in addressing the burden of Tuberculosis in the State of Gujarat. We will walk the last mile to support the TB elimination programme.”
The purpose of this webinar was to sensitise and mobilise more corporates to join hands in this fight against TB, and to share the success stories and experiences of the corporates like Apollo Tyres, Ambuja Cement and Nayara Energy who have been working in this sector for a long time.
USAID is the world’s premier international development agency and a catalytic actor driving development results. The Union, which partners with the Governments, International Agencies, Civil Society and the Private Sector, draws from the best scientific evidence and expertise to advance solutions to public health challenges affecting people living in poverty. FOKIA is an industry association dedicated to increasing the pace of socio-economic development of Kutch district.
Rajesh Dahiya, Vice President, Marketing, Sales & Service (India, SAARC & Oceania), Apollo Tyres Ltd said “Apollo Tyres has been working in the space of healthcare for its trucking community since 2001. We value this segment given they are our biggest customers. We included TB due to its coinfection with HIV, in 2017. This was started in partnership with The Union; and, we are extremely pleased that we have managed to incorporate this in our Healthcare Centres across the country.”
Apollo Tyres joined the Corporate TB Pledge (CTP)* in 2018 and since then has rolled out the TB intervention programme at 12 locations across the country. Company’s TB initiative primarily aims at awareness generation, early diagnosis and treatment adherence, to reduce morbidity and mortality due to TB amongst the trucking community. Apollo Tyres is also providing microscopy services at Agra and Gwalior in partnership with the respective State Governments.
Now a diamond member of CTP, Apollo Tyres’ TB intervention is part of its Healthcare programme to provide integrated and holistic health services to the trucking community, and the allied population, through its 31 Healthcare Centres located in the transhipment hubs across the country. The company has also started a 15-day long campaign for ‘TB free transhipment locations’. This campaign aims to intensify case finding among truckers and the allied population, at 31 locations across the country through outreach and communication.