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Mozambique battles tuberculosis

10th April 2007

Mozambique says it will seek United Nations funding for its battle against tuberculosis (TB), which has infected nearly half the country's population of 18 million, officials said.

Health Minister Ivo Paulo Garrido said the disease was compounding the health crisis already precipitated by HIV/AIDS, which interacts with TB in the same population.

He said the country would seek US$22 million from the (U.N.) Global Fund to spend over three years on treatment and identification of TB patients, since many Mozambicans who suffer from it lived far from health centres or were unaware that they had the disease.

HIV/AIDS infects 1.6 million Mozambicans, with 500 new infections every day.

The HIV epidemic has boosted TB infections across Africa, with the annual number of new TB cases three times what it was in 1990.


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