Each year, March 24 is observed as World Tuberculosis Day. Tuberculosis has been one of the most devastating diseases we had to fight in the 19th and 20th century. Thanks to advancement in healthcare, the mortality rate due to Tuberculosis has diminished dramatically in the 21st century, but we are still far from eradicating it completely. Hence observing World Tuberculosis Day holds a lot of significance. Here are the World Tuberculosis Day 2021 theme and the history behind it.
A report by WHO reveals that World Tuberculosis Day 2021 theme is ‘The Clock is Ticking.’ The tagline conveys the message that time is running out and we need to be even more committed to ending TB. World Tuberculosis Day 2021 becomes even more important in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic still looming over us. We are still living lives that are far from normal. We need policies made and supported by world leaders that can ensure that there is Universal Health coverage.
March 24 holds a lot of significance, as it marks the day in 1882 when Dr Robert Koch had announced that he had discovered the bacterium that causes TB. Not only did his discovery open the way towards diagnosing but also curing this disease that had plagued many for years. To this day, TB remains one of the world’s deadliest infectious killers. According to WHO, each day, nearly 4000 lives are lost to TB and close to 28,000 people fall ill with this preventable and curable disease. In 2019 alone 10,000,000 people fell ill due to TB, out of which 1, 400,000 lives were lost.