World TB Day - Remarks by USAID Southern Africa Mission Director Cheryl L. Anderson in Kanana, Orkney

Tuesday, March 24, 2015
USAID Supports South Africa on World TB Day - "How Will I Know" campaign
Mission Director Cheryl Anderson with Deputy President of SA, Cyril Ramaphosa and Ms. Steve Letsike of SANAC on the left and XDR
Mission Director Cheryl L. Anderson with Deputy President of SA, Cyril Ramaphosa and Ms. Steve Letsike of SANAC (left) and XDR TB Survivor, Dr. Thato Mosidi (right)
Image by:URC-SA


Good morning and thank you on behalf of the United States Government for the opportunity to participate in today’s event. 

As we have already heard this morning, South Africa is burdened by one of the most severe TB epidemics in the world. Additionally, South Africa has the greatest burden of HIV-infected individuals - and the TB and HIV epidemics are fueling each other.

As such, TB and HIV co-infection remains a priority focus for the U.S. Government, through PEPFAR, the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, as implemented by USAID and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC from the American people.  

The U.S. Government supports South Africa’s National TB Control Program, both directly through PEPFAR and other activities, and indirectly through our funding to the Global Fund and WHO.  

Tuberculosis control remains a concern for us all.  I can see that from the amazing turnout today.  It is especially meaningful for me to be here, because we found out through screening that my own two daughters were exposed to TB.  And they received treatment – in Ghana -- for latent TB. I made sure they didn’t miss a single dose.

And I am proud to confirm that the U.S. Government will ensure support for the South African Government’s priorities for TB, just as we are working through PEPFAR to advance its priorities for HIV and AIDS. 

Both programs will increasingly focus to target the highest burden, most challenging areas of the country, responding to the greatest needs. 

We collaborate closely with the South African Government and the National Department of Health to strengthen the national health system.  

Innovation is a hallmark of U.S. assistance in the health sector.  

And we are pleased that the U.S. government partnership with the South African Government in research is flourishing and driving an innovation agenda across the health sector.  

Our collaborative research programs address priority issues from new TB drug regimens to HIV vaccines. What we’re learning together here in South Africa has global implications, well beyond the borders of South Africa.

One ongoing clinical trial is testing whether we can shorten the treatment regimens for multidrug-resistant TB.  By investigating whether a nine-month course of treatment can prove as effective as the standard 24-month regimen that’s now used.  

I am confident that our partnerships can help generate further innovations and help us all to “leapfrog” to the most effective solutions to TB. 

The political will and leadership demonstrated by today’s event underscore precisely what is required to help us:

  • reach every person with TB, 
  • cure those in need of treatment, and 
  • prevent new infections. 

I applaud Minister Motsoaledi and the South African Government for their commitment to the fight.  We look forward to continuing to work in partnership -- to support your efforts to change the lives of millions of men, women, and children for the better.  

Realeboga, Thank you. 

Kanana-Orkney, North West Province
Issuing Country