The number of tuberculosis cases in Belarus increased by 12.4% in 2022 — 1,384 patients who fell ill for the first time and 279 patients with recurrence were detected during the year (18.1 per 100,000 population).
The least number of sick people is in Minsk — 7.9 people per 100,000 population, the most — in the Gomel region (28 people per 100,000). Last year, 16 children fell ill with tuberculosis, compared to 13 a year ago.
“The COVID-19 pandemic, combined with conflicts in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, as well as social and economic hardships, have had an impact on the long-term successes in the fight against tuberculosis,” noted the representative of the World Health Organization in Belarus, Siarhei Dyarditsa, in an interview with the “Zvyazda” newspaper. . “In Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the situation is complicated in many ways due to the prevalence of resistance to tuberculosis drugs and the combined infection of tuberculosis and HIV.”
During the coronavirus pandemic, a significant part of the bed fund in Belarusian hospitals was repurposed for the treatment of patients with COVID-19.
More than 30% of patients with newly diagnosed tuberculosis are infected with a special bacterium resistant to several drugs at once. In 10 years, she began to meet twice as often. Today there are bacteria that have resistance to 11 drugs at once. In fact, this is the majority of drugs against mycobacteria. Patients with drug resistance are more difficult to treat, their disease often turns into a chronic form.
The main prevention of tuberculosis in Belarus is the vaccine. It is administered in the maternity ward in the first 3-7 days of the child’s life. At the age of 7, if there is a negative Mantoux reaction and there are no contraindications, revaccination is performed.