In an effort to prevent the new Tuberculosis (TB) cases, the Greater Chennai Corporation has decided to map the vulnerable localities in the city.
The civic body would also collect details of the citizens’ occupation and their mode of commute, as workers in construction industry are more vulnerable to the disease. Details pertaining to TB cases reported in a particular area would also be collected.
"The survey would also collect the details of relatives and friends of the residents, if they are suffering from TB. Once the field-level survey is completed, we would map the locations in our GIS system. This would enable us to concentrate our TB control measures in the vulnerable spots, which would be marked in red," the official explained.
The Chennai Corporation has undertaken a project to map all the civic facilities, water bodies and buildings in the city using GIS technology. Now, TB mapping would also be included in the project.
However, the officials are yet to decide whether the field survey would be conducted by NGOs or by utilising Corporation's field officials.
Presently, the civic body runs facilities for TB diagnosis and advanced screening at all Corporation hospitals. As per records, around 7,000 TB patients are getting treatment in Corporation hospitals and are entitled for free X-ray screening and medicines. The civic body also has mobile TB vans for conducting screening camps in slum areas.
Under TB-free Chennai initiative, the civic body has an objective of identifying at least 110 TB patients per lakh population in Chennai every year.
Chennai Corporation data suggests that there are nearly 20,000 TB patients in the city who are undergoing treatment in government and private hospitals.
The civic body has taken steps to issue free vouchers to TB patients so that they can undergo X-ray screening of chest to check for abnormalities in lung function.