Information about Covid-19 coronavirus

World TB Day: Council warns against smoking especially in light of Covid 19

24 March marks World TB Day.

The National Council Against Smoking has yet again encouraged people to stop smoking especially in light of Covid 19.

The council wants to bring awareness around smoking and TB and how this impacts the immune system.

Executive director of the National Council Against Smoking, Savera Kalideen says there are more than 400,000 new TB cases in South Africa each year and about 80% of the population already has the TB bacteria although it is latent.

The thing with smoking or being exposed to second-hand smoke is that it could move that latent TB into active TB and it is the chemical components and the smoke that actually do that.

Savera Kalideen, Executive director - National Council Against Smoking

Obviously once you get active TB then you have to have treatment but for people who continue to smoke while they have TB, they will find that either it will take them longer to get better or the treatment is not as effective as it would have been even when they have completed the full course of the treatment.

Savera Kalideen, Executive director - National Council Against Smoking

Smoking is really extremely harmful for the entire immune system, for the respiratory system.... and when you add Covid-19 on top of that, even though we don't have the evidence to show that there would be some additional impact, what we do know is that for any respiratory illnesses, smoking makes your outcome and disease progression much worse than it would be if you were not smoking.

Savera Kalideen, Executive director - National Council Against Smoking

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