Target TB and the White Ribbon Alliance call for a month of action on TB and maternal and child health

4 November 2011 - Washington D.C - Target TB has joined up with the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood (WRA) to raise awareness about the impact of tuberculosis (TB) on maternal and child health.

Throughout November WRA is encouraging its members, advocates and other visitors to the website to push for policy and programme changes that will ensure that the burden of TB on women and children is reduced and eventually eliminated.

The campaign follows the Every Woman, Every Child event in September where Lucica Ditiu, Executive Secretary of the Stop TB Partnership, called for greater focus on TB in the context of maternal and child health. "Tuberculosis is somehow forgotten, but incredible in its global spread," said Dr Ditiu at the event. "Speaking in terms of MDG 4 and 5, if we do not act against TB now, more than three million women and one million children will die, and millions more children will be left orphaned."

To tackle the problem, pregnant women need to have access to relevant information so that they understand the risks associated with TB during pregnancy and childbirth, WRA and Target TB say. In addition, women must have access to TB and HIV screening and testing services, particularly in countries and regions with high levels of TB and limited resources.

The campaign website includes a series of actions that WRA members and other advocates and programme mangers can take to help fight TB among women and children.