About the theme
While non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are on the rise, communicable diseases still constitute a major public health threat. Although the incidence of infectious diseases has decreased as a result of overall socio-economic progress and the increasing use of vaccines, these diseases still contribute to around 30% of illnesses in India. Exacerbating the challenges of controlling communicable diseases is the limitation of the prevalent healthcare system – there are gaps in planning, financing, human resources, infrastructure, supply systems, governance and monitoring.
The Tata Trusts’ initiatives under this domain are focused primarily on dealing with tuberculosis (TB), malaria, and acute encephalitis syndrome.
Tuberculosis: The Trusts are implementing several initiatives to tackle this challenge head-on, including research, supplementing nutrition to TB patients and their families and seeding the India Health Fund to leverage collective global power to eradicate TB and malaria.
Malaria: The Trusts’ interventions in this sub-domain are focused in South Odisha, which records the largest incidence of the disease. The focus is on parasite and vector control through routine surveillance screening, provision of residual sprays, mosquito nets, etc. The Trusts also train staff to use a digital app to perform screening and collect data.
Project Prayaas: The Trusts’ intervention is focused on the two most vulnerable blocks in Gorakhpur district, Uttar Pradesh, and aims to effectively prevent and control the spread of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES).