New Delhi: Within three months of Prime Minister`s intervention, the government is learnt to be launching an online portal next month to monitor and track patients affected by a drug-resistant form of tuberculosis.
"Detailed Project Report has been submitted by NIC (National Informatic Centre) to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. Minister Sibal (Kapil Sibal) has approved it and in a review meeting taken by him, it was decided to launch portal by May 15," a senior government official told PTI.
The government under this online health information management system, developed by NIC, has plans to inter connect all DOTS (Directly Observed Treatment Short-course) where TB patients are treated and use various data generated from them.
The data collected from these centres will be used for generating awareness, help and guide patients in getting treatment.
The development comes in the wake of correspondence in February between IT and Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal and Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azaad with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Through this correspondence, PM`s attention was drawn towards the new strain of tuberculosis, which is communicable and untreatable. This Total Drug Resistant (TDR) TB is attributed to wrong medication and untimely treatment.
Both, IT and Health Ministries were directed to act on the issue and work out an effective solution to prevent spread of TB.
"We have found few more cases of TDR TB. Earlier there were 12 patients of TDR TB out of which three are dead, three are not responding to the treatment, three are stable and the remaining have not returned for treatment," consultant physician Dr Zarir F Udwadia at Hinduja Hospital in Mumbai said.
For creating awareness, the government will process all the data available with government departments and update the patients in usable format. The guidance would include precautionary measures, nearest hospital to patients location and facilities available for patients in hospitals, among others.