TB Alert is the UK's national tuberculosis charity - the only charity that focuses on TB both in the UK and overseas. TB Alert runs projects in India, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi and advocate to fight TB on a global level.
TB Alert's vision is the control and ultimate elimination of TB.
TB Alert's mission is to increase access to effective treatment for all.
TB alert's work is focused on three key areas:
- Raising public and professional awareness about TB,and providing support to patients during their treatment.
- Bringing together statutory health services, voluntary organisations and people affected by TB to plan and deliver better TB services.
- Developing policy and advocating for the resources to improve the care of patients and the prevention and control of TB.
The Truth About TB programme
The Truth About TB programme addresses TB awareness in the UK by:
- Recognising the social, cultural and economic factors that heighten individual vulnerability to TB.
- Empowering the people affected by TB to inform the design and delivery of TB services.
- Involving the third sector in TB partnerships with local government and the NHS.
The project has been funded until 2014 by the Department of Health (DH), to meet the TB awareness raising objectives set out in the Department of Health’s TB Action Plan (2004) and TB Commissioning Toolkit (2007).
TB Alert helps to provide support for people affected by TB in the UK, through its Information Service, Patient Support Fund and TB Action Group.
- People who are concerned about TB can call a dedicated TB information line on 01273 234770 to have their questions answered.
- Information and support can also be sourced online, through The Truth About TB website at: www.thetruthabouttb.org and through an online patient community http://tb-alert.healthunlocked.com/.
Patient Support Fund
TB Alert provides specific, small-grants to help vulnerable patients in the UK meet the costs associated with TB treatment, and to take their TB treatment regularly and in full. Applications are made on behalf of people undergoing TB treatment by their dedicated TB nurse.
The TB Action Group
The TB Action Group (TBAG) is a network for people affected by TB in the UK that provides support for people during their treatment and recovery from TB. Members also use their insights and stories to raise awareness of TB and to advocate for improved TB services.
TB Alert’s work in India dates back to their first projects in Delhi and Jharkhand state in 2000. In 2004 TB Alert registered a sister organisation, TB Alert India, which is now at the forefront of national efforts to address TB working in close alignment with the Indian Government’s national TB programme. TB Alert India is also a key partner in Axshya, a multi-million dollar TB project funded by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, the leading global funder of TB programmes.
TB-HIV in Andhra Pradesh project (TAP)
In 2011 TB Alert launched the TB-HIV in Andhra Pradesh programme (TAP), a partnership project funded by the Department for International Development to improve access to TB services for under served communities in Andhra Pradesh.
The project reaches over 300,000 rural and urban poor people, to increase their knowledge and awareness of TB-HIV co-infection and their access to free government TB-HIV services. The project also creates and strengthens community groups that advocate for improved TB diagnostic and treatment services at project and state level.
The Delhi DIVINE TB Project
In 2008, TB Alert India launched the Delhi DIVINE project in the Burari and Sant Nagar districts of Delhi to provide TB diagnosis and treatment facilities, supported by community outreach work to help local people access TB services. In early 2011, the project was extended until 2014 at the request of the Indian Government, and widened to reach an additional 300,000 people in the three adjoining districts of Swarup Nagar, Ibrahimpur and Nathupura.
TB Alert launched the COTHAZ project in February 2011 to help address TB and HIV co-infection in Zambia, with funding from the Department for International Development. COTHAZ stands for Community-led TB-HIV Advocacy in Zambia. It is a three-year partnership with seven Zambian NGOs, working in six areas of the country: Kabwe, Katete, Luanshya, Masaiti, Lusaka and Kitwe.
The COTHAZ project works at three levels: raising awareness of TB among local communities; advocating for better TB services at local level; and engaging with national government to secure funding and support for improved TB services.
Murambinda Mission Hospital TB Programme
TB Alert has been funding the Murambinda Hospital Tuberculosis Programme, across the district of Buhera, since 2002. Now the programme is looking to extend its reach to cover 1.57 million people across the entire Manicaland Province.
Murambinda’s TB programme aims to increase early detection and successful treatment of TB by:
Training community volunteers: Local volunteers are well placed to raise community awareness about TB symptoms, to identify and refer suspected TB patients to local clinics, to support patients through their treatment – and explain why treatment completion is so important – and to help find and remotivate TB patients that stopped treatment early.
Strengthening project management: Many health workers in local clinics believe that only highly trained doctors have the skills to address TB. Murambinda’s programme provides training for local health workers to develop and manage TB programmes – including community outreach and engagement activities, to address the social and economic factors that limit the effectiveness of medical interventions.
Strengthening clinical record keeping: Murambinda’s TB programme seeks to strengthen TB data capturing, record keeping and monthly reporting at all clinics and hospitals. This allows them to fully understand the picture of TB in the local area, including how many patients fail to complete treatment successfully, and to avoid drug-shortages. The project’s TB Data Managers visit clinics to check registers and make follow-up visits to patients who have discontinued treatment. They also ensure that each clinic has enough stock of anti-tuberculosis drugs.
President and Patrons
Sir John Crofton 1912–2009.
As Emeritus Professor of Respiratory Diseases and Tuberculosis at Edinburgh University in the 1950s – a place and time in which TB was the leading cause of death in young people – Sir John led the team responsible for bringing TB under control. His ‘Edinburgh Method’ was the first demonstration of mass control of TB, which was subsequently instituted in 23 European countries. Sir John was a leader in the work of the World Health Organisation, a celebrated author and an influential teacher. Sir John was knighted in 1977 and awarded the Union Medal in 2005 by the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, for his contributions to TB control. To the end of his life in 2009, at the age of 97, Sir John continued as a tireless campaigner on TB issues and fundraiser for TB Alert.
Sir John's legacy continues to support TB Alert’s life-saving work through The Sir John Crofton Fund To Fight TB: http://www.tbalert.org/index.php/support-us/give-money/sir-john-crofton-fund