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Tuberculosis patients refuse treatment because of religion

In Naryn on September 29-30, representatives of the regional kazyyat and imams of district mosques were told about tuberculosis at the initiative of the National Center for Phthisiology at the Ministry of Health of Kyrgyzstan.

The purpose of the meeting, according to the press center of the Ministry of Health, is to train religious figures in work with the believers and informing about tuberculosis, and to form a positive attitude of religious ministers to the very process of informing citizens about health issues.

«There are those among the tuberculosis patients, who refuse to be treated because they are committed to Islam and they should not take medicines,» Dilshat Khaitov, USAID advocacy and communication advocate for USAID project told. «We want to dispel myths and teach the imams during prayers and in private conversations calmly and with confidence tell the believers that Islamic medicine does not cure tuberculosis, TB is cured only by anti-tuberculosis drugs.»

The imams will receive information about tuberculosis, the world and national statistics about the disease, the problems of discrimination and how to work with the population. They are given answers to the questions, whether believers with tuberculosis can pray in the mosque, is it possible to isolate the patient according to the Sharia, is it possible to marry a Muslim woman or marry a Muslim, a tuberculosis patient, and others.