The Prof M Viswanathan Honour Award was presented to Dr. Asha Frederick State TB officer Tamilnadu on June 9 by the Prof. M. Viswanathan Diabetes Research Centre and MV Hospital for Diabetes, Royapuram, Chennai.
Speaking on the occasion Dr. Vijay Viswanathan, Head and Chief Diabetologist, said that Diabetes rates among people with TB in Chennai was high. He gave the result of the RePORT India study funded by the NIH in USA and DBT in India. Studies done by the Prof. M. Viswanathan Diabetes Research Centre showed that those TB patients who had diabetes and had a lower body weight had a higher failure rate of TB treatment. He therefore stressed the importance of diagnosing high blood sugar during TB infection and treating the high blood sugar. This is necessary to end TB soon he said.
Dr. Subash Babu, Scientific Director of the NIH- ICER institute presided over the talk by Dr Asha Frederick.
Dr Asha Frederick was honoured with the Prof M Viswanathan Honour Award and she spoke on the Tuberculosis Eradication Program in Tamil Nadu. She said that the Government of Tamil Nadu will make Tamil Nadu tuberculosis free by 2025. In order to achieve this goal, Diagnosis of TB under the Tamil Nadu TB Eradication Program- sputum testing centers are operational. To improve the diagnosis of drug sensitivity and drug resistance many CBNAAT are operational.
In order to improve the nutritional status of TB patients Rs.500 /- per month for all TB patients (including private) by direct benefit transfer each month as an incentive is paid into their bank account.
To achieve the goal of a tuberculosis free Tamil Nadu by 2025, the Government of Tamil Nadu has made various plans. A study conducted by ICMR-National Institute of Epidemiology, World Health Organization India and Indian Association of Preventive and Social Medicine in Tamil Nadu showed 40% reduction in incidence of tuberculosis in Nilgiris since 2015 and Government has announced a Silver medal to this district.