My name is Musa, in 2012, I fell ill with symptoms that we normally attribute to malaria. So I did what most people do - self medicate. With no improvement, I decided to visit the hospital where I was treated for malaria. It was at this time I started coughing. When cough medicines didn’t help, I visited various hospitals where I underwent many tests including sputum microscopy.
After one and a half years, I had a chest x-ray and was diagnosed with pneumonia. I was treated, but the cough continued. When I returned to the hospital, I was encouraged to try herbal remedies. My health was deteriorating, and I started vomiting blood. Finally, I was diagnosed with TB and started treatment. Now in a poor physical condition, I was a walking skeleton. Without a job or income, I missed a number of my refills. Despite that, after 6 months, I was told my TB was cured.
A month later, the cough was back. When I went to the hospital, they said there was nothing they could do. I was sent home. Deteriorating quickly, I now had to deal with even more stigma, but without support. My family tried to send me to the village to see a spiritual healer; I refused, and the rejection worsened. My family thought I was possessed, and kicked me out of the house. I was living on the streets, vomiting blood every day, and the cough remained. At this point i decided to end my life.