TB CARE II is working throughout Bangladesh to raise awareness of TB among vulnerable groups, including children, urban and rural populations, and low-income populations. World TB Day 2014 is a great opportunity to disseminate TB messages that specifically target these groups. For example, to successfully reach children and their parents TB CARE II decided to go where children congregate in large numbers: the two biggest amusement parks in Dhaka, Shishu Park, and Shishu Mela. When families collect their entry tickets to the parks they will receive tickets that say “If you have any TB patients in your family. Your child may be affected, so you must take your child to the nearest health complex.” Families will also receive one sticker and one leaflet with similar awareness messages on pediatric TB, and children will be given small blue and white balloons with the TB CARE II Project logo.
Elsewhere in Dhaka, at three busy hospitals, there will be three huge (8ft. x 4ft.) colorful helium balloons displayed for seven days with the message “TB is Curable”. The three hospitals are the National TB Control Hospital in Mohakhali, the Chest Disease Hospital in Shymoli, and BIRDEM hospital; all three of these hospitals see many people every day who present TB-like symptoms. Leaflets will also be distributed at these locations which will contain messages such as “If you are coughing for more than three weeks, get tested for TB” and “TB Diagnosis and Treatment is free.” There will also be a huge rally on World TB Day that originates in Dhaka City which will be attended by many TB CARE II staff.
Nationwide, TB CARE II will air radio spots on recognizing TB symptoms such as cough and fever. More than 100 radio spots will air on 3 different radio stations, including the “Bangladesh Betar” station whose national coverage will reach the most rural populations in Bangladesh. The other two radio stations are FM stations that will reach urban office workers and others commuting to and from work between 7-9am and 5-7pm. Newspaper hawkers will give out leaflets that have TB awareness messages along with their newspapers. At the district level, TB CARE II field staff will participate in rallies and discussion sessions, and six districts will have folk song performances that incorporate TB awareness messages. Targeted TB awareness commercials will air on a cable channel in one district, Rangpur. Finally, the Project will send out a voice SMS from March 20-24th that will reach 600,000 people, with an emphasis on low-income populations. The voice SMS will be 20 seconds long with concise information about TB.
To view the materials that will be used during World TB Day 2014, please click the links below: