Every March we observe World TB Day to raise understanding and awareness of one of the world’s most infectious diseases. The rise of Tuberculosis among postmen became the catalyst for the establishment of what we now know as Benenden Hospital.
The birth of Benenden Hospital
In 1905 Charles Garland set up the National Association for the Establishment and Maintenance of Sanatoria for Workers Suffering from Tuberculosis Friendly Society (known today as Benenden Health).
The hospital’s foundation stone was laid the following year in 1906 (this still has pride of place in the hospital today) and in 1907 we began welcoming Post Office workers who recovered in the peaceful and naturally beautiful surroundings that patients of Benenden Hospital still enjoy today.
The caring ethos remains important to our service, and we think that Charles Garland would be proud of our clean, infection-free environment and the work every individual here puts in to maintaining our Outstanding CQC rating.
Tuberculosis in modern times
140 years ago, on 24 March 1882, Dr Robert Koch announced that he had discovered the bacterium that causes TB. This opened the way towards diagnosing and curing this disease and the day also now marks World TB Day.
Unfortunately, TB remains with us worldwide and we use World TB Day as an opportunity to raise awareness of its burden and the progression of prevention and care efforts.
Goals for beating the disease this World TB Day
The World Health Organisation’s (WHO) theme for World TB Day in 2022 is: ‘Invest to End TB. Save Lives.’ This conveys the urgent need to invest resources to ramp up the fight against TB and achieve the commitments to end TB made by global leaders.
Since the year 2000, global efforts to combat TB have saved approximately 66 million lives. However, for the first time in over ten years and as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, TB deaths increased in 2020.
In 2020, an estimated ten million people fell ill with TB and everyday nearly 4,100 people sadly die from TB – even though it is preventable and treatable.
It’s estimated 85% of people who develop it can be treated successfully with a six-month drug regime. The WHO continues to promote and track progress in the development of new tuberculosis diagnostics, medicines, and vaccines.
To support this year’s World TB Day, visit the WHO website and discover the ways you can help to invest to end TB and subsequently save lives.
Celebrate our hospital’s history
Here at Benenden Hospital, we take pride in the fact our rich history includes a period when we contributed to the worldwide fight against TB. Learn more about our hospital’s history on our website.
Published on 24 March 2022