The International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease is seeking a full scale international public relations agency to serve as the organizations Public Relations company of record. This organization provides technical assistance, education and research for promoting lung health in low and middle-income countries. Established in 1920 as a federation of national lung associations, today offices exist in India, China, Mexico, Uganda, Myanmar & Egypt. Current activities focus on tuberculosis, HIV, child lung health, asthma, tobacco prevention and health policy.
An agency is sought to primarily focus on Challenge TB, the flagship global mechanism for implementing USAID’s TB strategy as well as contributing to TB/HIV activities under the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
India continues to be the highest tuberculosis (TB) burden country in the world with an estimated incidence of 2.1 million TB cases annually in 2013 (WHO Global TB Report 2014). TB prevalence and mortality during the same year stood at 2.6 million and 278,000 respectively. There are an estimated 700,000 cases missed annually in India, which either go undiagnosed or are diagnosed but not notified to the programme.
Rates of TB notification are higher in men, which may partly reflect epidemiological differences in exposure, risk of infection, and progression from infection to disease. However, some studies indicate that women may have higher rates of progression from infection to disease and higher case fatality in their early reproductive ages. Social taboos that affect access of women to health services lead to absence in detection of TB or detection at late stages of the disease. Social stigma continues to be a barrier to access for both men and women, The End TB Strategy looks to reduce deaths due to TB by 95% ( base year 2015), and aims at a 90% reduction in TB incidence rate and zero affected families facing catastrophic costs due to TB by 2035. The vision of the End TB Strategy is a world free of TB: Zero TB deaths, Zero TB disease, and Zero TB suffering. These are ambitious goals that can only be delivered if the country’s leaders take definitive steps towards meeting them.
To achieve the targets set, these efforts will require a renewed commitment on the part of the Government of India and other domestic sources of financing, human, and material resources to focus attention on the immense challenge of ending TB in India. To do so, a broad social movement capable of catalyzing and sustaining demand for action on TB will be needed.
Wide participation of various stakeholders in TB, especially the private sector, the corporate sector, the media, the academia and the people is required to deliver such an ambitious goal. Champions from amongst patients, technical experts, political representatives, public figures, sportspeople, and celebrities can add their voice and increase visibility for the need for action on TB.
Full information on requirements for the agency can be found here.