Albuquerque RESULTS Generates Media on Tuberculosis

March 29, 2010
by Heidi Topp Brooks, RESULTS Albuquerque, NM

We’ve been busy for World TB Day, mostly in advance of the day, but a lot will come together just for today or very soon. Here’s what we‘ve done:

For three days in early March we hosted Albertina Nyatsi, an AIDS/TB advocate from Swaziland (where the HIV-positive rate is 26.1 percent of all adults ages 15–49). Following a six-hour delayed flight, she launched into her marathon series of speaking events. She spoke about her experience with TB to Grand Rounds at the medical school, to a group of medical students interested in global health, to a University of New Mexico class in sociology of medicine, and to a church group in Santa Fe. She also met with aides from both Senate offices and had a face-to-face meeting with Congressman Martin Heinrich. She was interviewed by local public radio reporter Sarah Gustavus for a KUNM broadcast to be aired today, World TB Day. We also received a mini-grant to make a short documentary about her as well as one about the other visitor we had. The documentary filmmaker followed her all to all of her various speaking engagements. I’m sure she felt like a celebrity!

Our second visitor was a recovered TB patient from El Paso, Rachel Orduño, whose story is featured on the TB Photovoice home page, She had an interview with the Albuquerque Journal together with another TB patient from Albuquerque and a couple of TB nurses from the New Mexico Department of Health. (Just got the word that although that story didn’t appear today, but it will sometime soon.) And after filming her mini-documentary, she spoke on our nationwide RESULTS call from here in Albuquerque. The other speaker was Donna Berry, who is with Partners in Health.

In cooperation with our contacts at state Department of Health, we also wrote an op-ed for the signature of Dr. Marcos Burgos, medical director of New Mexico’s TB program. I heard it will be Roxanne Allen taped a commentary for broadcast on KUNM this evening, along with Albertina’s interview.

The two mini-documentaries are nearing completion and will be made available to anyone who wants to use them. One use might be to place them on the state Department of Health website.

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