Meet Our Patients (33): WH’s Story – Tuberculosis Case (Together with SMRU)

As soon as my employer knew I had TB, he dismissed me and my husband, then he burnt all my belongings. I no longer had a place to stay…


This is the story of WH, a woman in her 40s:

‘It has been 5 years since I left my native place to seek a job in Thailand. I have been working in a farm near Mae Sot together with my husband. I had symptoms of coughing, fever, night sweat, easily tired, and reduced appetite for a month. I asked my friend to help me. She said she would send me to Mae Tao Clinic if I could give her daily wage and some transportation charge (450 THB). I agreed to pay her. In MTC, they welcome me friendly, examined me and requested to hand in 2 cups with sputum for laboratory testing. I asked my friend again to help me; I could not go as I was ill and weak. This time I could not afford to pay her as before. She and I got an agreement to send my sputum samples for THB 100. After that, MTC called me and told that I had TB. I came to MTC to see the TB doctor from SMRU. I told to the doctor I could not afford the treatment. The doctor explained to me the treatment would be free of charge. As soon as my employer knew I had TB, he dismissed me and my husband, then he burnt all my belongings. I no longer had a place to stay. The doctor explained I could stay in the SMRU TB centre. So, I followed to doctor’s advice and went to stay in SMRU TB clinic.

Just after I got anti-TB treatment, I felt better and the coughing reduced. Now, I feel pretty good. I can eat well, the food is provided by SMRU TB clinic. My husband was also screened for TB and staff said he did not have TB.

Without the support of MTC and SMRU, it could not be possible to cure TB patients like me or other people working in the border with low income’.

We want leaders who support the idea that access to health care is a human right, regardless of their origin, religion, or diagnosis.

(This case story is provided by the SMRU)


2013 2017 Variation
Thai Bur Thai Bur Thai Bur

HIV testing (VCT)

289 252 467 370 +62% +47%

TB screening

216 1 009


Malaria total caseload

306 410 14 16 -95% -96%
Malaria admission 73 118 5 6 -93%


The cross-border referral network among the Myanmar Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS), International Organization for Migration (IOM), Shoklo Malaria Research Unit (SMRU) and MTC has been strengthened. Together with partners, MTC has been tackling the pervasive diseases along the border: Malaria, Tuberculosis and HIV. Through the effort, total malaria caseload has significantly dropped while the number of TB screening and HIV testing show the considerable increase. This evidently illustrates the positive impact of cross-border collaboration.