In pictures – World TB Day 2015

By Didor Sadulloev, a photo journalist with the Central Asia media agency. Didor himself is a migrant from Tajikistan and lives with the migrant community. He is well versed with the challenges migrants face.

The Russian Federation is among the 22 high tuberculosis (TB) burden countries. In 2013 alone, the country saw more than 90,000 new cases of TB. The disease remains one of Russia’s major public health threats. In low- and middle- TB-burden countries, TB among foreign-born populations is often high, due to existing infection or reactivation of latent TB. As a step towards ensuring timely detection, diagnosis and access to subsequent treatment, the Russian Red Cross Society is carrying out health sessions with migrant workers to raise awareness about TB and HIV prevention and legal aspects of migrants accessing healthcare.

The poor, people living with HIV, drug users, migrant population, children and women and prison inmates among others are those who are disproportionately affected by TB and often missed, either because they were not diagnosed or because they were diagnosed but not reported. Migration as a social determinant of health increases TB-related morbidity and mortality for migrants and their communities. Late diagnosis, inadequate treatment and poor living conditions fuel the transmission of TB among migrants. To fight the disease effectively and save lives, the Russian Red Cross Society’s volunteers are working in collaboration with the relevant ministries to ensure that migrants have access to healthcare for timely diagnosis, receive the necessary medication and complete their treatment. Photo credit: Didor Sadulloev


There are more than 10 million migrants in country. Field research conducted by the Russian Red Cross Society in collaboration with Eli Lilly highlights the health challenges faced by migrants. More than 78 per cent of the migrants have limited access to healthcare. Only 2.1 per cent receive health insurance from their employers. The Russian Red Cross Society volunteers are conducting health sessions as well as disseminating leaflets and brochures among the migrant population to raising awareness about the disease and on how and where to go for TB and HIV testing. Photo credit: Didor Sadulloev


The Russian Red Cross Society ensures that appropriate measures are taken to identify and address physical, financial, social and cultural barriers – as well as health system barriers – to accessing TB treatment services by migrants. The Red Cross desk at the migration centre provides migrants with health-related materials in various languages and facilitates medical checks, X-rays, TB and HIV testing. HIV and TB are closely connected. HIV weakens the immune system hence people living with HIV are more susceptible to developing TB and dying if they do not have access to proper treatment. Those diagnosed with TB should be counselled to take a HIV test. Photo credit: Didor Sadulloev


The Russian Red Cross Society is using its strong ties with the government and communities and actively engaging them in advocating for scaling up access to screening, testing and treatment of TB especially to reach the most vulnerable and underserved communities who are being missed. Photo credit: Didor Sadulloev


Abdurakhim is a 27-year-old migrant from Tajikistan.  He came to the migration centre to process his work permit. He is aware that he has to be healthy before starting a job and agreed to undergo an X–ray testing for tuberculosis. Abdurakhim said that he knows about tuberculosis and its main symptoms from the Red Cross leaflet that was distributed among migrants. Photo credit: Didor Sadulloev


To ensure adherence to treatment, care and supervision needs to be provided in a context-specific and culturally-sensitive manner. To bridge the gap between the formal health system and migrant workers, volunteers have been trained and their role is recognized by the health system. Patient and peer support groups have also helped to promote adherence to treatment. Photo credit: Didor Sadulloev