Breaking the drug-resistant TB transmission cycle important

Nearly two months after the Health Ministry set a highly ambitious target of working towards elimination of tuberculosis by 2025, a study published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases indicates that India’s TB crisis is all set to snowball by 2040 when one in 10 cases could be drug-resistant. What is even more alarming is that the increased... Continue Reading →

Without a magic wand, India cannot eliminate TB by 2025

At the end of 50 years of tuberculosis control activities, the disease remains a major health challenge in India. As per new estimates, the number of new cases every year has risen to 2.8 million and mortality is put at 4,80,000 each year. These figures may go up when the national TB prevalence survey is... Continue Reading →

About 0.5 million TB patients approaching RNTCP centres are not treated

In 2013, India had about 2.7 million people with TB, which is 23 per cent of the global burden of TB. India also accounted for 27 per cent (760,000) of the world’s “missing” patients — those may not have received effective TB care or may have received potentially suboptimal TB care in India’s private sector.... Continue Reading →

Did WHO’s TB care advice cause more MDR-TB cases?

Between 1993 and 2002, the World Health Organisation violated sound medical care by urging low- and middle-income countries to follow less expensive, largely untested and ineffective treatment protocols to treat people with multidrug resistant TB (MDR-TB), says a paper published on June 21, 2016 in the Health and Human Rights Journal. Cost factor was the... Continue Reading →

A step closer to a safer, more efficacious TB vaccine

A potent vaccine against tuberculosis is getting readied at the Pune-based Serum Institute of India Limited. The institute started a ‘Phase 2b’ clinical trial in neonates in South Africa late last year using a novel, recombinant BCG (bacillus Calmette-Guérin) vaccine. The new TB vaccine (VPM1002) is based on the BCG vaccine in use today, but... Continue Reading →

Pilot testing of bedaquiline drug on TB patients to start soon

A pilot programme to test the toxicity, particularly cardio-toxicity, of bedaquiline drug (used for combating multidrug-drug resistant TB) in the Indian population, assess its ability to achieve culture conversion and check the operational feasibility of using the drug to treat MDR-TB patients would start in India by the end of this month or on World... Continue Reading →

‘India’s fight against TB lacks punch’

“TB is the leading infectious killer, yet countries still follow old and dangerous [TB diagnostic and treatment] polices,” MSF Access Campaign tweeted. In another tweet, MSF International said: “Outdated tuberculosis policies are risking further spread of drug-resistant TB.” These tweets came soon after the “Out of Step 2015” report on TB policies in 24 countries,... Continue Reading →

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