Dr Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare and Chemicals and Fertilisers, Government of India distributed Nutritional Baskets to 5 TB patients who are adopted by Ni-Kshay Mitra Apollo Tyres Foundation under the Pradhan Mantri TB Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan. Apollo Tyres Foundation has adopted 75 TB patients and the remaining TB patients would be provided Nutritional Baskets at their assigned TB Unit ensuring minimal inconvenience is caused to any TB patient.
Honourable Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare and Chemicals and Fertilisers, Government of India also flagged off 75 trucks with TB messages that have been provided by Apollo Tyres Foundation. These trucks would travel across States and will carry the message right to the masses.
Dr Mandaviya, while addressing the gathering at the event Partnership for Action against Tuberculosis (PAcT) urged Corporates, Institutions, Trade Bodies, Associations, Individuals, etc to come forward and actively support India’s battle against tuberculosis.
Dr Mandaviya reiterated India’s commitment to eliminate TB by 2025, five years ahead of the SDG target through a 360-degree holistic approach. Multi-sectoral engagement has been planned as a key pillar in supporting National TB Elimination Programme by leveraging cooperation from other stakeholders to mee the end TB target of the country.
It is important to highlight that the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) launched the ‘Pradhan Mantri TB Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan’ in September 2022 wherein industries, corporates and business houses, elected representatives, individuals, institutions, non-governmental organisations, political parties and partners can adopt either individual patients or the blocks/urban wards/districts/states for accelerating response against TB and to complement government efforts in its path towards ending TB in India.
Commenting on this, Onkar Kanwar, Chairman, Apollo Tyres Ltd said, “Corporates have a significant role in ensuring the national agenda to eliminate TB; they can cascade it to the entire value chain as well. Our value of ‘Taking Responsibility’ propels us further to ensure that healthcare is deep-rooted in our communities we operate in. Along with our own efforts, we have initiated the process of attaching corporates, NGO partners and others in this journey to raise awareness.”
People from all spheres of lives came forward and joined hand in ‘Pradhan Mantri TB Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan’. The other objective of involving common people was to fight stigma and ensure that TB patients feel cared for and this would have positive impact on their treatment outcomes.
In an innovative way, Apollo Tyres Foundation intensified TB-Free Campaign by engaging ‘Heroes On Wheels’ (the Truck Drivers) to create awareness of Tuberculosis amongst the larger target audience. Truckers are one of the key populations to be reached out with TB awareness and prevention activities. It is important to reach them with TB awareness messages, promote TB screening, active case findings and link TB diagnosed cases with services as provisioned in the National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme (NTEP).
Ms Roli Singh, AS & MD NHM, MoHFW, Govt of India appreciated Apollo Tyres Foundation’s efforts towards TB-related activities for the trucking community and other vulnerable groups across 32 locations in 19 States in the country. Ms Singh added that the initiative of 75 Trucks branded with TB messages from five locations (Delhi, Mudra Port- Gujarat, Hyderabad, Jalandhar and Agartala) will boost efforts to address TB amongst the trucking community.
Dr Kuldeep Singh Sachdeva, Regional Director, South East Asia, The International Union against Lung Diseases and Tuberculosis welcomed the move to involve Corporate Sector in the battle against tuberculosis, and stated that elimination of workplace stigma can only be advocated with support from the Corporate Sector.
Gaurav Kumar, Chief Financial Officer, Apollo Tyres Ltd, who was also present at the event, assured all support from Apollo Tyres Foundation towards TB elimination.
Dr Mandaviya applauded the presence of multiple corporates in the programme Partnership for Action against Tuberculosis (PAcT) and also urged other corporates and business houses to join hands in the mission ‘End TB in India’.
“TB Harega Desh Jeetega”