Rise in tuberculosis patients in South Pyongan Province
There has been a drastic rise in tuberculosis (TB) patients in some areas of North Korea. The country’s medical infrastructure is poor and there is a severe lack of medicine, which means that North Koreans in these areas are failing to get proper treatment.
“South Pyongyang Province’s tuberculosis hospitals can only handle 100 patients, but the number of patients has risen so much that they are overflowing into regular hospitals,” said a South Pyongan Province-based source on April 22. “There has been a significant increase in TB patients among women and children in Kaechon, Pukchon, Tokchon and Taehung.”
A separate source in South Pyongan Province added that the patients are “cold, hungry, and treated poorly by both doctors and nurses. They are stressed out and want to leave, but their illness is infectious so they can’t.”
“The TB centers in hospitals are no better than ordinary houses because they are old and have no medicine,” she said.
North Korea’s No. 3 Hospital and No. 3 Sanatorium are focused on treating TB patients. Dilapidated facilities and the lack of expertise and medicine, however, continue to plague these treatment centers.
North Koreans suffering from the illness prefer home treatment to treatment at these hospitals. ......