Nuru's clinic didn't find the tuberculosis in her body and she ended up passing it on to her grandchildren.
My name is Nuru and I am 62 years old. I live in Dar es Salaam with my two grandchildren who are at school here whilst their mother works out of town.
Last year I began coughing badly, developed a fever and then pains around my body. I went to the clinic but although they thought it was tuberculosis, I tested negative. I soon began to lose weight and was always sweating and weak. Eventually I couldn’t get out of bed. My oldest grandchild who is 18 years old had to stop school and look after me. He also had to go to market, cook, clean the house and prepare his 10 year old sister for school. Then they both became sick too. The clinics could not find tuberculosis in any of us. We were very scared.
One day a lady from MKUTA visited me. She works with APOPO and the clinics. She had met me when I had gone to the clinic and had given me some advice about common illnesses, and how to take care of myself. She told me that when I was tested for tuberculosis, my sputum sample had then been sent on to APOPO in Morogoro where it had been retested. She also told me that APOPO uses rats to detect tuberculosis and that the rats had found that I was in fact TB positive.
I didn’t believe her at first but she showed me pictures. She then helped me get on to the treatment provided for free by the clinic. She kept visiting me and making sure I was looking after myself until I got better and could stand on my own two feet. She also made sure my grandchildren were tested and when they were found TB positive, they were immediately put on treatment.
We are all well now. APOPO and their rats saved our lives and I couldn’t have managed without MKUTA’s help.