Tanzania – Jacobo

IMG_6120 Jacobo Nanjalahus_1

Jacobo Nanjalahu

“My name is Jacobo Nanjalahu, I’m 24 and I live in an area of Dar es Salaam called Manzese with my parents and siblings. I work as a plumber. Last year one of my brothers fell ill with tuberculosis (TB). He started coughing blood and was feeling very tired all the time. I took care of him for a few weeks. After some time, I also started coughing, lost weight and ran a consistent fever at night.

I went to the hospital where they told me I had pneumonia. I got some medicine, but it didn’t help. I was feeling weaker every day and I had to stop working. My work allows me to support my parents and to save a little bit of money for the future. Not being able to make money was challenging for the whole family. We struggled to get enough food and pay the rent. I went back to the hospital and asked for a TB-test, but the result was negative. I was very worried, as I didn’t know what to do to get better.

I couldn’t have been more surprised when I got a call from a MKUTA volunteer a week later, telling me I had tuberculosis after all. My sample had been re-tested by rats who indicated it as TB-positive, something that was confirmed in APOPO’s lab afterwards. Who would have thought that rats would be the ones to give the answer to my question?

I have been taking my medication every day and I’m feeling much better already. The doctor told me I was no longer contagious and I’m back at work making a living to support my family. The MKUTA volunteer told me how easily tuberculosis can spread, and I wanted to make sure nobody I was working with was infected. So, I told all of my colleagues and they went to the hospital for a check-up. APOPO and the HeroRATs also found out that one of my colleagues had tuberculosis. We are both very thankful we could get on treatment and we know it saved our lives.”

My name is Jacobo Nanjalahu, I’m 24 and I live in an area of Dar es Salaam called Manzese with my parents and siblings. I work as a plumber. Last year one of my

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