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Studies
HIV/TB Patients in Eastern Europe at higher risk of death than in Western Europe

HIV/TB Patients in Eastern Europe at higher risk of death than in Western Europe

The Lancet HIV Journal published a recent research study conducted by Daria Podlekareva and her colleagues that shows an alarming situation for people living with HIV and diagnosed with tuberculosis in Eastern Europe. They have a risk of death nearly four-times higher than patients from Western Europe and Latin America.   As mentioned in the study the reasons for the high mortality rate in Eastern Europe are complex and multifactorial. However, an urgent action is needed to improve tuberculosis care for patients living with HIV in this region. For full text and more details, please click here: Tuberculosis-related mortality in people living with HIV in Europe and Latin America: an international cohort study This blog is the product of an activity that has received funding under an operating grant from the European Union’s Health Programme (2014-2020). The content of this blog represents the views of the author only and is his/her sole responsibility; it cannot be considered to reflect the views of the European Commission and/or the Consumers, Health, Agriculture and Food Executive Agency or any other body of the European Union. The European Commission and the Agency do not accept any responsibility for use that may be made of the information More…

A New Cost-Effectiveness Study of TB Care Models in Ukraine as an Advocacy Tool

A New Cost-Effectiveness Study of TB Care Models in Ukraine as an Advocacy Tool

‘Strengthening TB Control in Ukraine’ (STBCU) – a project funded by US Agency for International Development (USAID) – has released results of the pilot study of economic effectiveness and cost analysis of model of TB treatment in Ukraine. The study was conducted in Kriviy Rih (Dnipropetrovsk oblast). The goal of the study was to identify costs of organizational component of key TB treatment models and to evaluate the models’ influence on TB patients’ adherence to treatment and treatment effectiveness. The objective of the study was to illustrate comparative costs and effectiveness of ambulatory (out-patient) TB care versus in-patient TB care. The study used WHO protocol “Guidelines for cost and cost-effectiveness analysis of tuberculosis control”. The study identified two main organizational TB treatment models: Combined in-and out-patient TB treatment model Out-patient TB treatment model Taking into account that each of these models acts like a combination of approaches, the study has provided more detalisation about the facilities and players involved in TB treatment models. As a result, several organisational sub-models of TB treatment were identified that are seen differently in decision making and are combined in a “big picture” of complex TB care services. Three key players involved in these TB treatment models More…

Is sustainable domestic financing of TB response a reality in EECA region?

Is sustainable domestic financing of TB response a reality in EECA region?

This article, originally, posted on Aidspan was written by Sveta McGill, Health Advocacy Officer, at RESULTS UK.  In 2014 the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria started implementing its new funding model (NFM). The NFM aims to re-allocate its resources away from middle-income countries towards those with the highest burdens of disease and the least ability to pay.  For the countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA) – the single most-affected region in the world by the spread of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) – a loss of eligibility for Global Fund funding is bad news. Since its founding in 2002, the Fund has been a key donor and supporter of HIV and TB programs in EECA. Global Fund investments have supported countries in their development of enabling environments and have helped strengthen their health and community systems allowing the region to show progress against HIV and TB. In particular, the Fund has been very supportive, both administratively and financially, of civil society in EECA where civil society organizations implement Fund-resourced programs. As a result, TB advocates and CSOs are now very aware that it is mostly the work they are doing within vulnerable communities that will be most More…

Study finds fake and poorly made drugs being used in the fight against tuberculosis

Study finds fake and poorly made drugs being used in the fight against tuberculosis

The fight against tuberculosis (TB) is being made more difficult as a result of the use of substandard and fake medication to treat the disease, a new study has revealed. In the biggest-ever study of its kind, researchers collected samples of two frontline anti-TB drugs (isoniazid and rifampicin) from pharmacies and local markets in 17 countries, including some in Europe. Worryingly, from these collected samples almost one in ten drugs failed to meet basic quality standards while around half of these had no active ingredient (the molecule that destroys the TB bacteria) whatsoever. The reasons for the existence of such poor quality drugs are wide-ranging. While it was discovered that some fake antibiotics were introduced into the markets by criminal enterprises , perhaps what is most shocking is that the vast majority actually came from legitimate manufacturers. These were just so poorly made they were ineffective or had corroded in transport. In order for TB treatment to be effective it is crucial that TB patients are able to access and are given the correct medication for the correct period of time. However, for many this involves a significant cost, both in travelling to supervised or accredited clinics and in purchasing More…

New study shows much higher levels of drug-resistant tuberculosis than previously thought

New study shows much higher levels of drug-resistant tuberculosis than previously thought

A study published in the Lancet has worryingly revealed higher than expected levels of drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB). Findings show that 43.7 percent of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) patients from eight countries around the world have shown a resistance to at least one-second line drug – worryingly highlighting that the back-up drugs used to treat drug-resistant TB are failing in large numbers. In order to treat TB, patients must undergo a course of treatment lasting six to nine months. Drug-resistant TB emerges if treatment is stopped prematurely or if drugs are taken incorrectly. This allows for bacteria to re-emerge and to become resistant to medication and is something that is often the case in areas where there is weak TB control or case management. 1,278 MDR-TB patients in Estonia, Latvia, Peru, Philippines, Russia, South Africa, South Korea and Thailand were tested in order to determine how many were resistant to second-line drugs – drugs used to treat drug-resistant strains of TB. Almost half of those tested – 43.7 percent – were resistant to at least one second-line drug. Alarmingly, the study also found that 6.7 percent had extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB).  XDR-TB occurs when a resistance to second-line drugs develops on top More…

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