Namibia has fourth highest per capita TB burden in world

WINDHOEK: Namibia has the fourth highest per capita tuberculosis (TB) burden in the world with an estimated 655 incidences, Deputy Director of Special Programmes in the Ministry of Health and Social Services, Anne-Marie Nitschke says.

Speaking at a media briefing in Windhoek yesterday, Nitschke said Namibia is one of the 10 countries with the highest incidences of TB after Swaziland, South Africa and Sierra Leone.

She said the TB burden in the country remains challenging, but there has been a noticeable decline in case numbers since 2006.

She noted that the treatment success rate in Namibia has increased to 85 per cent in 2013 compared to 83 per cent in 2012.

Nitschke said the burden of TB in the country has been strongly influenced by the HIV epidemic, poverty, smoking, under-nutrition, overcrowding and diabetes mellitus.

The Khomas Region has recorded the highest number of cases at more than 1 000, followed by the Erongo Region, and Ohangwena Region. The least TB cases were recorded in the Zambezi Region.