That “other disease” isn’t as sexy…

MDG #6 Logo- Fight HIV and other disseasesIts one of the world’s biggest killers, but it continues to be one of the most neglected diseases. Tuberculosis. It kills more people than AIDS, even though we’ve have the treatment for almost 40 years.

The sixth Millennium Development Goal is “Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and other diseases.” We all know about HIV/AIDS. Amazing work has been done in the field of treatment, advocacy, education and human rights within the sphere of AIDS. Billions of dollars have been spent, rightly so, on combating the world epidemic.

But for all the attention and money that has been spent on HIV and AIDS, “other diseases” including TB have been largely ignored.

Craig David and Lee Reichman speak about TB

"If I can use my celebrity to bring awareness to TB, that's good. Its important" - Craig David

And at the UN Foundation/Mashable Digital Media Lounge, UN Goodwill Ambassador and musician Craig David threw his celebrity behind the cause. He was joined by Lucy Chesire, a TB/HIV survivor from Kenya and Lee Reichman, a leading academic in the field.

Closeup of Craig David, speaking about TBThe panel focused on two overarching problems that keep TB in the dark, so to speak: Ignorance and Stigma. Most people in industrialized nations don’t realize TB is still around. And those that do have it are afraid to self-report.

The lack of public interest results in a lack of funding, too. When asked if the profile of TB discouraged drug companies from developing better drugs, Lee Reichman answered, “Yes, yes and YES! Its a non sexy disease. People don’t care about it. Drug companies have to compete for profits…” As a result, there is an increased need for public-private partnerships, in order to get the drugs and treatments that we need.

TB Survivor speak about her experiences

"At the end of the day we are all connected by the air we breathe. And its in the air that TB can spread." - Lucy Chesire, TB survivor and activist

I’ve studied stigma reduction campaigns and have noted that  advocates for many health issues (AIDS, leprosy, some disabilities) have been able to shift the discourse from a medical model to a human rights model. There certainly seems to be some of that shift evident in TB strategies – Ms. Chesire mentioned participatory programs in her own country, Kenya, and the focus on empowering people with TB. I’m wondering what kind of networked advocacy efforts are in place with (for example) immigrant rights groups… I’ll be looking into this further. Any comments or case studies are welcome!

Advertisements

8 responses to “That “other disease” isn’t as sexy…

  1. Avoid having sex in your sleep by sleeping for 8 hours. Good one.

    Another tip is provided by a 43-year-old virgin, who has revealed how she fastens a wire chain around her upper thigh every night to ensure she remains celibate.

  2. It is in reality a great and useful piece of info. I¡¦m satisfied that you just shared this useful info with us. Please stay us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thanks a lot for giving everyone such a splendid opportunity to read articles and blog posts from this web site. It can be very pleasurable and as well , full of a good time for me personally and my office colleagues to search your site minimum 3 times per week to see the new secrets you have. Not to mention, I am just usually astounded with the fabulous advice served by you. Selected 4 points in this article are completely the most beneficial we’ve had.

  4. You find out a thing day-to-day. Thanks for discussing.

  5. Hi-Ya! our family loves your striking write-up thanks and pls keep it on

  6. I saw a lot of website but I believe this one has got something special in it.

  7. Would you be keen on exchanging links?

  8. Pingback: Best Energy Monitor

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s