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PM: 20 Years of Fighting TB, Cambodia Becomes a Model Country

PHNOM PENH: Prime Minister Hun Sen has released a message on the occasion of World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, saying that Cambodia has become a model country over the past 20 years, successful in the fight against tuberculosis.

In his message, Prime Minister Hun Sen explained that World TB Day, held under the theme “Invest to End TB. Save Lives”, is held every year to raise public awareness and understanding on the global epidemic of TB — including the extent of the problem and the consequences of TB — to contribute to the promotion of social welfare as well as the value and dignity of society.

Over the past 20 years of Cambodia’s fight against TB, the Kingdom has transformed itself from one of the highest TB countries in the world to one with the lowest number of cases. The death toll from TB in Cambodia has dropped from 42 cases per 100,000 people, to 20 cases per 100,000, marking a decline of 52%. The incidence of new TB infections has also dropped from 579 cases per 100,000 people to 274 cases per 100,000, which is another drop of 53%.

The Prime Minister wrote, "Cambodia achieved the Millennium Development Goal related to reducing morbidity and mortality from TB four years ahead of schedule, Cambodia's success in eradicating TB is an achievement that only a small number of countries can accomplish."

However, the Prime Minister also observed that the rate of illness and death due to TB in Cambodia is still high compared to some other countries, and there are still many people in the country who have not yet received health services to treat the illness.

In this regard, Prime Minister Hun Sen urged for the acceleration of further efforts to reduce the morbidity and mortality from tuberculosis in Cambodia, with high consideration taken to account for the well-being of all people in society.

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