In Winter 2010, Target TB staff visited Malawi, here 74% of people live in poverty and life expectancy is 52– 54 yrs.
In a rural village we met 17yr old Lisnet Malikita. When Lisnet became very ill, tired and weak she wasn’t worried at first. She’d never heard anything about TB at school.
Her mother took her to see a traditional healer who just gave her herbs that had no effect at all. She said “the healer was playing with Lisnet’s life”
Luckily for Lisnet, her older sister knew all about Target TB’s local volunteer TB Community Carers, and she took her to see one who lived very close to their own village. Thanks to his TB training, he immediately recognised Lisnet’s symptoms; relentless coughing, tiredness, and awful night sweats. He took a sample at one of Target TB’s new, local sputum-collection points and sent it for testing. It confirmed very quickly and accurately that Lisnet did indeed have TB.
Lisnet was in hospital for two weeks of intensive treatment until she regained her strength. Then, she continued the long 6 months of her antibiotic treatment at home with the full practical and emotional support of her Community Carer.
Lisnet says she is feeling so much better. She told us she would now advise anyone with the symptoms she suffered not to go to a Traditional Healer, but to go to their local TB community volunteer for proper treatment.
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