W6 Activity: Tuberculosis in India

With one of the largest populations in the world, India is a thriving, bustling, country and is rapidly growing. Unfortunately, along with all the economic growth and there is also an influx of disease. Tuberculosis affects a large portion of the population. The air is often very extremely polluted and filled with bacteria. The landscapes can sometimes be dusty which can lead to lots of lung infections, frequent asthma, and tuberculosis. Drug resistant TB in India is very prevalent among the poor, there is somewhere between 2-3 million cases. There are a few NGO’s that are already out there to help administer medication and to offer aid to those struggling with tuberculosis, including the difficult to treat, drug-resistant strains. One of the NGO’s is called DotSYNC. The DotSYNC app seeks to treat patients suffering from Multi Drug Resistant Tuberculosis.  The app keeps track of patient information and doses, etc. Tuberculosis occurs when mycobacteria is inhaled. The bacteria invade the lungs, and can spread to other parts of the body. Symptoms start off relatively vague, like fatigue, weight loss, cough, but if left untreated can progress to clubbing of nails, chest pain, night sweats, and coughing up copious amounts of blood. Tuberculosis is severe and if not treated can lead to death. It is one of the most deadliest communicable diseases. One anthropologist that has done generous amounts of research in India is Dr. Ian Harper. He is an anthropologist at the University of Edinburgh. He has done lots of research on how to help prevent the spread of this illness. As of now, most strains of tuberculosis can be treated with antibiotics. MDR TB is treated with higher dosages and different drugs. India allots about $115 dollars per person suffering with TB, which is much lower than countries like China that allot $600 per person for the treatment. Overall, India needs more funding and needs more help from orgs like the NGOs.

National Center for Biotechnology Information. Accessed June 29, 2015. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16266447.

Forbes. Accessed June 29, 2015. http://www.forbes.com/sites/techonomy/2015/01/13/three-ngos-fighting-tuberculosis-with-mobile-tech/.


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