With the rapid spread of COVID-19 all over the world, changes in access and quality of TB services are predicted due to the likely redistribution of resources to combat the new pandemic. Thus, in Azerbaijan, a high TB burden country, there is a need to consolidate efforts to protect people affected by TB as one of the vulnerable groups at risk of serious
complications from Covid-19.
On May 13, 2020, the Global TB Caucus - global network of parliamentarians committed to tackling TB – organized an on-line meeting with the main national TB stakeholders with the theme «Tuberculosis policy in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic».
The conference was attended by members of the Parliament, Soltan Mammadov, Razi Nurullayev, Sadagat Valiyeva, head of National TB Caucus, MP Malahat Ibrahimgizi, Hagigat Gadirova, manager of the National Tuberculosis Program of the Ministry of Health, head of Public Health and Reform Center, WHO Europe and Baku office, as well as members of the Azerbaijan TB NGO Coalition.
The meeting covered several subjects, including the main difficulties in the fight against tuberculosis during the COVID-19 outbreak and quarantine regimen and socio-economic problems that hinder the treatment of TB patients. Participants were also informed on the measures taken to prevent interruptions in the anti-tuberculosis activities.
The nurses, who worked day and night during this difficult period, were applauded by the conference participants on the occasion of May 12, World Nurses' Day. Parliamentarians showed a strong will to participate in discussions and planned to voice up the challenges in tribunes of Parliament.