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Welcome Address : By Dr(Mrs) Prabha Jagota, Director, NTI, Bangalore.

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I request Mrs Bhagirathi to present a bouquet and a momento to Dr. G.R. Khatri, DDG(TB) who has been the first Indian to be honoured with Dr. Karl Styblo award in September, 2000, instituted by IUATLD for the best TB worker of the world.

NTI is situated in a 23 acre sprawling area, which was the palace of erstwhile Maharaja of Mysore. We have got the infrastructure for the training of various categories of doctors and para medical staff. Training has been an integral part of the NTI since its inception. As of now, NTI has trained 6,079 personnel in its 13 to 8 weeks training programme for the key personnel of DTP all over India. The number of personnel trained in various categories are 1543 DTOs, 1468 TOs, 1149 LTs, 968 SAs and 951 XTs. NTI has also trained 320 MOs and 90 para-medical personnel under RNTCP.

The majority of five principles of DOTS were discovered in India. These principles were exported to different countries of the world and the DOTS strategy has been implemented in about 130 countries. These principles were imported back to India and we conducted a pilot study on its feasibility. This pilot study commenced from 2nd October, 1993 on a population of 2.35 million in five districts of the country. After achieving tremendous success in pilot areas, its operational feasibility in a country like India known for its wide and varied terrain, large population, different languages and large number of other variants was also assessed. We did take about 2 years in undertaking mega preparatory activities after which we have gone for mass scale expansion which is now targeted to cater to about 800 million by 2004.

Under the dynamic leadership of Dr. S.P. Agarwal and with his persistent intervention and with the blessings of the Union Health Secretary and Honourable Minister, the broad framework of involvement of medical colleges in respect of inputs that shall be provided by CTD has been formulated. The present workshop is the important milestone to fine-tune the operational aspects of the implementation strategy.

The impact of TB is unfortunately greatest on poor. The majority of people affected by the disease are in the economically active age group. The families and communities are deprived of their members and their work force. TB and poverty go hand in hand – people who are poor get TB and people who get TB become poor.

The control of TB is possible with the available technology. We need to use them better. The most important advances will be those that enable us to mobilize resources, to improve our health infrastructure and to involve the teaching fraternity from Medical Colleges in practicing and disseminating the programme policy.

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