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Unit for Patients Suffering from Multi-Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis Opens in Homiel

Observance of infection control requirements is a prerequisite for effective treatment of tuberculosis. A renovated unit for patients suffering from multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR TB) was opened in the Homiel Regional TB Hospital. The renovation works have been supported by the grant of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) which is managed by the UN Development Programme in Belarus.

Over US$470 thousand was invested in the renovation of the hospital unit, procurement of furniture for wards and installation of airborne ventilation system.

The opening ceremony was attended by Antonius Broek, UN Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative in Belarus and representatives of the Ministry of Health and local authorities. Mr. Broek stressed that at the moment Belarus is among the group of countries with the highest prevalence of multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis and, therefore, such projects are of particular significance.

Paul Jansen from US National Center for HIV, STD and TB Prevention, a renowned specialist in infection control teaching an infection hospitals design course at the Harvard University helped the Belarusian experts to install the ventilation system. Mr. Jansen gave the highest reviews of the quality of works performed at the MDR TB unit of the Homiel TB Hospital and said that the unit is the best one in post-Soviet countries.

Modern ventilation systems are needed to ensure safe environment for patients and medical staff and to prevent cross-infections in hospitals. One more unit is expected to open soon in the Mahiliou Regional TB Facility.

For further information, please contact GFATM Grants Management Team in Belarus, tel.: (017) 306-51-88.

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