Nurses receive award for their work in tuberculosis

By putting the World TB Day slogan 'I am stopping TB' into action, 11 nurses have earned the 2008 ICN/Lilly Award, for their outstanding work in fighting tuberculosis (TB) and multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB)[1]. The award recipients come from six TB affected countries: from Kenya (Diana Jelegat Kipsoisoi), Lesotho (Likhapha Ntlamelle ), Malawi (Chrisie Bwazi, Rodwell Gundo and Shouts Simeza), the Russian Federation (Nadezhda Leontieva, Marina Listova, Elena Girfanova and Elena Nizova), South Africa (Mamogale Thabitha Masemola) and Swaziland (Agatha Nomoa Tsabedze).

Photo: Nurses receive award for their work in tuberculosis
Each of the award recipients works daily with patients, families and communities hard hit by the resurgent TB epidemic and the steady increase in multi-drug resistant and extremely drug resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB).  MDR-TB has been recorded at the highest rates ever, according to a new report from WHO Stop TB, Anti-Tuberculosis Drug Resistance in the World.  That same report found that XDR-TB, a virtually untreatable form of the respiratory disease, has been recorded in 45 countries.
The ICN/Lilly Award, launched on World TB Day 2007, includes a specially designed medal and an educational grant to provide continued professional development.  The Award is a key part of an extensive, multi-country ICN-Lilly partnership to increase the TB knowledge and skills of nurses in high TB burden countries and to recognise nursing as a key stakeholder in stemming TB as a global public health threat.
ICN is delighted to announce that Lilly has committed sufficient funding to expand the project over the next four years.  The emphasis will be on continuing the Training of Trainers (TOT) courses in countries with high TB and/or drug resistant TB burden, and adding at least eight new countries.  As a result of this project a minimum of 10 regional nurse trainers, 1000 local nurse trainers and 10 000 additional nurses will be trained in TB and MDR-TB care, providing a critical mass of knowledgeable nurses to fight TB on the front lines.  More details will be available at the project launch later this spring.  
The 2008 TB award recipients are:
Kenya − Diana Jelegat Kipsoisoi: Nursing Officer at the TB clinic of Mbagathi District Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya. She supervises the daily running of the clinic, and has been key to reducing the incidence of TB through active case finding.
Lesotho − Likhapha Ntlamelle: MDR-TB Community Coordinator at the Institute of Development Management in Maseru, Lesotho.  Besides coordinating MDR-TB treatment in all districts and training health personnel, Ms Ntlamelle is the deputy TB manager in charge of Global Fund activities, has given presentations at the international level and was involved in adapting a WHO TB/HIV training manual.
Malawi − Chrisie Bwazi, Rodwell Gundo and Shouts Simeza: team members of the Northern Region group, employed by the Ministry of Health of Malawi.  They have conducted TB trainings and advocated for the safety of nurses working in TB care.
Russian Federation
Elena Girfanova:  a nurse coordinator in the Omsk mental health hospital in the Omsk oblast. Her work with patients and family members has resulted in improved quality of patient care and 80% successful treatment outcomes.  She has conducted training for nurses, patients and family members and has developed and implemented guidelines on professional risks prevention.
Nadezhda Leontieva:  award nurseat the TB unit of the prison hospital in the Kemerovo oblast, where TB rates are particularly high.  Along with her team, Ms Leontieva has ensured that preventative measures are implemented as soon as patients enter the unit and organised contests to encourage patients to adhere to treatment and to increase their knowledge of TB.
Marina Listova:  responsible for infectious control at the Regional TB Dispensary in the Archangelsk oblast, she organises TB training, promotes adherence and motivates patients to take responsibility for their own health.
Elena Nizova:  head nurse of the TB unit in the Regional TB Dispensary in Ivanovo oblast.  She encourages patients to play a role in the educational process, and encourages mutual respect between nurses and patients.  She has implemented a system of quality control of nursing care.
South Africa − Mamogale Thabitha Masemola:  Nursing Service Manager at Standerton TB Specialised Hospital in South Africa. Ms Masemola has educated hospital staff about TB and promoted the use of protective clothing.  She also organises meetings with the community, primary health care centre and NGOs.
Swaziland Agatha Nomoa Tsabedze:  a trained midwife specialized in dual TB/HIV counselling, she has trained over 100 nurses, as well as support staff in the region and provides education, testing and counselling on HIV and TB.
Tuberculosis (TB) is a preventable disease that kills 1.7 million people every year.  In 2006 9.2 million new cases of TB were diagnosed and over, 400,000 cases of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB)* emerged.  The outbreak of extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB)** in 2006, combined the three threats to tuberculosis control: rapid spread, HIV co-infection, and drug resistance.  Mobilisation of the nursing workforce is critically needed to scale up prevention, care and treatment.  ICN is working in partnership with Eli Lilly and 13 other health organisations in the partnership to build capacity in countries where TB represents a high burden of disease.


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