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Phumeza Tisile

I am a 30-year-old (2020) and live in Cape Town. In 2010, I was diagnosed with tuberculosis and was forced to stop my studies at Cape Peninsula University of Technology to go for treatment. Despite this, my condition did not improve, and after about five months of treatment, first for “normal” TB and then for multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB), I was finally diagnosed with extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), the deadliest form of the disease.

Stigma continues to be a major barrier to providing high quality person-centred TB care. TB Proof is committed to destigmatising all forms of TB.

Photo credit: Jelle Krings/ Médecins Sans Frontières
MDR-TB treatment left me deaf, and I was told more than once that I might die from TB as my chances of surviving it were 20%.

Against all odds, I was cured from XDR-TB in 2013, but was deaf. I got a once in a lifetime chance to hear again. In 2015, I underwent a surgery for Cochlear Implants and now I can hear! I recently graduated from the University of Cape Town.

TB is curable, the treatment is horrible but to stay alive I had to take it…to those who have TB, it is not the end of the world. There’s life after TB.

Other Members

Bart Willems

In 2012, I swam four and a half laps of the Long Street pool in Cape Town entirely under water. When I surfaced, I covered a distance of 114 m and have broken the South African freediving record. This win was made extra special by the fact that I recovered from TB five years earlier.

Andrea von Delft

As a physiotherapist, I knew about TB, but not enough. I was generally thinking, “it’s out there.” It wasn’t until my husband, a medical doctor, was diagnosed with TB, that I realise that anyone can get TB and that health workers are particular at risk of contracting TB.

Dalene von Delft

I was diagnosed with MDR-TB on Christmas Eve of 2010. What followed was a harrowing 19 months of treatment, during which I had to make some potentially life-threatening decisions in an attempt to preserve my hearing and career. I had optimal access to all forms of care, but the vast majority of other patients are not nearly as lucky. I became a very motivated TB patient/physician advocate, campaigning for more effective, safer and equitable treatment options on local and global platforms.

Ingrid Schoeman

I developed drug-resistant TB while working as a dietitian in a public hospital in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. The TB treatment side effects caused liver failure and I was in a coma. TB changed my life and today I am a passionate TB advocate.