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Posts tagged "XDR TB"
International course on clinical management of M(X)DR-TB for WHO Europe Region countries

International course on clinical management of M(X)DR-TB for WHO Europe Region countries

The WHO Collaborating Centre for Research and Training in Management of MDR-TB in Latvia announced an opportunity for clinicians and responsible for clinical managemnet of DR-TB to join their course. The main objective of the course is to update knowladge of the participants on the latest global development in M(X)DR-TB, as well as develop skills for M(X)DR-TB case management in their respective countries. The course will be available in Russian and English (according to schedule) and will last for 9 working days. For more details about the course please click here: International Advanced Course in clinical management of DR TB. Your completed application (click here: Application form WHO CC ) please send to the Tuberculosis Foundation of Latvia. E: info@ltbf.lv 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 More…

TB in Romania: For Patients Waiting for XDR-TB Treatment in Romania, Someday Never Comes

TB in Romania: For Patients Waiting for XDR-TB Treatment in Romania, Someday Never Comes

In March 2014, Jonathan Stillo, a member of TB Europe Coalition’s Steering Committee, participated in the joint World Health Organization (WHO) and European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC) National Tuberculosis (TB) Program Review in Romania on a team of eleven international and fifteen national experts. This blog does not necessarily reflect the positions of WHO or ECDC and should be seen as one research and advocacy expert’s opinion that is informed by eight years of working in Romania. The published 2014 review of Romania’s TB program should be available in early autumn. Right now, 30,000 Romanians have various forms of TB. This is by far the largest number in the European Union (EU), accounting for about 25% of all cases in member states. Over the past ten years, the overall TB incidence in Romania has dropped steadily. However, even after this reduction, Romania’s TB incidence and prevalence eclipse all other EU countries. The Romanian incidence rate is presently more than five times the EU average and about twenty times higher than low incidence countries such as Germany. Romania also has the largest number of drug resistant TB cases in the EU. About 1,500 people are living now with Multi-Drug Resistant More…

Story from Moldova: TB for 20 years with no hope of recovery

Story from Moldova: TB for 20 years with no hope of recovery

Today we’re sharing a story from TBEC members Act for Involvement, who are based in Moldova. If you’d like to share a story of your work or experience with TB then please do get in touch with bruce.warwick@results.org.uk. Chased by tuberculosis for more than twenty years, Igor (42), from the small town Anenii Noi in Moldova, lives in dark hopelessness for a recovery. His wife has passed away and his children have been taken to a specialised institution. Igor, who now lives with extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), was first infected when he was 20 and was serving a prison sentence in Russia. In 2001, after being released and settling in Moldova, Igor relapsed. Four years ago he learnt that he had multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB). ‘So many times I started the treatment and then gave up because it was so hard, I was feeling better and had to work in order to feed my family’, recalls Igor. Last January, doctors found out that Igor’s wife and his two children, a young boy (11) and a young girl (9), all had TB and were all started on treatment. Despite these efforts, the children’s mother and Igor’s wife died just four months later. More…

Best practices in prevention control and care for drug-resistant TB

Best practices in prevention control and care for drug-resistant TB

The World Health Organisation have recently published a new compendium, ‘Best practices in prevention, control and care for drug-resistant tuberculosis: A resource for the continued implementation of the Consolidated Action Plan to Prevent and Combat Multidrug- and Extensively Drug-Resistant TB in the WHO European Region‘. The compendium recognises the progress that has been made in implementing the ‘Consolidated Action Plan to Prevent and Combat Multidrug- and Extensively-Drug Resistant TB’ in the region but also makes clear that critical challenges still remain. As a result of these challenges, this new compendium has been released to improve the transfer of knowledge and experiences between countries in the European region and to help improve the health system approach. There are examples from nearly half the countries in the Region, providing invaluable information on MDR-TB control, including patient support, advocacy, communication and social mobilisation and also the needs of particular populations, that can be used to help shape how best to effectively combat and control MDR- and XDR-TB. We encourage you to read the compendium as a means of inspiring the work you do on TB in your country. 

TB: Voices in the fight against the European epidemic

TB: Voices in the fight against the European epidemic

The TB Europe Coalition recently released an updated version of our report ‘Tuberculosis: Voices in the fight against the European epidemic‘. Here we tell the story of Iulian. Since we first published Iulian’s story in our report, Iulian developed XDR-TB and passed away in spring of 2012, leaving behind a wife and two children. Iulian spent his life working in agriculture and construction. Until he got sick with TB he had what he called a ‘beautiful life’. Here is his story: Iulian contracted TB in 2007 and soon developed MDR-TB. At first he took his medication regularly, but he was forced to interrupt his treatment to go back to work so that he could support his family. When he returned home to restart treatment, his local dispensary ran out of one of the four drugs needed to treat his MDR-TB, meaning only part of his treatment was available. Drug stock-outs cause patients to lose faith in the system and increase the likelihood that patients develop drug resistance due to uneven treatment. When asked about how TB made him feel, Iulian explained: I always feel that I have this disease. I have this fear in my hear that I’m never going to More…

Europe: 1,000 TB cases a day, 380,000 a year

New surveillance data released by the World Health Organisation and ECDC has shown that, in Europe, there are 1,000 new cases of TB everyday. This is despite the fact that many view TB, or ‘consumption’, as a disease of the past. The burden is greatest in the eastern part of the WHO European Region which is home to 87% of TB cases. In 2011, these countries recorded most the estimated 44,000 TB deaths. However, it is critical to recognise that this isn’t a problem only associated in the eastern part of the region. In the UK TB rates are on the rise. London has the highest TB rates of any city in western Europe and, perhaps most worryingly, 8.4% of new TB cases are drug resistant. Drug-resistant TB (DR-TB) is a growing public health emergency in Europe and, indeed, worldwide. According to estimates some 78,000 people are  taken sick with multi drug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) and extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) each year. Treating these strains of TB is considerably more expensive at about hundred times the cost compared to treating standard TB. Treatment is also far more toxic for patients – despite the fact that drugs for standard TB treatment can already More…

Tuberculosis: Europe's Ticking Timebomb

Tuberculosis: Europe’s Ticking Timebomb

The TB Europe Coalition calls on the European Commission to increase public health funding to fight resurgence of tuberculosis in Europe and eradicate deadly strains.  Drug-resistant forms on the rise in Europe; treatment costs to increase 50 times if epidemic left unchecked  MEPs get involved in the fight against deadly strains of the disease  Photo exhibition held in European Parliament to call attention to the issue Brussels, 20th March 2013 – On World Tuberculosis Day the TB Europe Coalition called on the European Commission to substantially increase funding to fight tuberculosis in Europe. Tuberculosis causes not only illness and death, according to estimates, it costs EU Member States €15 million every week and €750 million every year. Most people consider TB a disease of the past, yet this ancient disease is posing new challenges for countries across the globe as TB becomes more and more resistant to existing drugs. Europe is no exception – the World Health Organisation reported an estimated 76,000 cases of multi-drug resistant TB in the WHO European Region in 2011, accounting for a quarter of the global burden[1]. While TB can be treated, multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) and extensively-resistant TB (XDR-TB) are much more costly and More…

Tuberculosis and the Media

Tuberculosis and the Media

In the past few weeks there has been a, relatively, considerable amount of column inches have been given over to tuberculosis (TB), particularly the worrying rise of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) strains. MDR-TB is a form of TB that is resistant to isoniazid and rifampicin (the two most powerful anti-TB drugs). In a recent post we highlighted articles both in the New York Times and Al-Jazeera alerting us to the concern that many developing countries with high TB prevalence are awash with fake and substandard drugs. In it’s leading story and, rightly so, featured on it’s front cover the most recent Europe edition of TIME magazine has declared “Contagion: Why drug-resistant TB threatens us all”. The article highlights that, currently, only 10 percent of new MDR cases are receiving proper treatment. Given that it also mentions there will be over 2 million new cases of MDR-TB from 2011-2015 this is something that should worry us all and spur us to take action. Importantly, a lack of proper treatment not only raises the risk of death for a TB patient, but it can also lead to the emergence of extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB). This is even more difficult to treat, being More…

Belarus: the world's highest documented levels of MDR-TB

Belarus: the world’s highest documented levels of MDR-TB

In 2010, a survey conducted in Minsk, Belarus found that nearly one out of every two (47.8 percent) TB patients had multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB). These were the highest MDR-TB levels ever recorded. In response, the Belarusian Ministry of Health conducted a nationwide survey to better understand drug resistance across the country, as well as the risk factors that lead to MDR-TB. The national survey found similar levels as the initial Minsk survey did. Thirty-five percent of new TB cases and 45 percent of all TB patients in the study had MDR-TB. Of those with MDR-TB, 12 percent had extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), a form of resistance to second line drugs that develops on top of MDR-TB. The results confirm that the alarming levels of drug resistance first found in Minsk are not restricted to the capital city but are widespread across the country. The high level of new TB cases that have MDR-TB indicates that MDR-TB is easily being transmitted throughout the population. The authors cite poor management of TB patients, including poor lab facilities for TB diagnosis, a lack of standardised treatment, poor infection control within hospitals, failure in directly observing treatment, lack of patient support, drug stock-outs and More…

TB bacterium “is not resting”

TB bacterium “is not resting”

The weekly science journal Nature recently published an article called TB’s revenge: The world is starting to win the war against tuberculosis, but drug-resistant forms pose a new threat, which gives an excellent overview of where we are in the global fight against TB and, in particular, against drug-resistant TB: In the early 1980s, TB cases had dropped to such low rates that Western policy-makers frequently talked of eradication of the disease. Then came the HIV epidemic, which triggered a resurgence of TB in the late 1990s. But the latest report on TB from the World Health Organization (WHO), published in October, revealed signs of progress against normal — or drug-sensitive — cases of the bacterial disease. New infections have fallen and the mortality rate has dropped by 41% since 1990. But, the report warned, “drug-resistant TB threatens global TB control”. Some 3.7% of new cases and 20% of previously treated cases are MDR-TB. And whereas in 2000 the highest incidence of MDR-TB was 14%, in Estonia; in 2010 that figure had jumped to 35%, in Russia’s Arkhangelsk province. An estimated 9% of drug-resistant cases are XDR-TB, which has now been reported in 84 countries. It is a tale of More…

WHO report on tuberculosis highlights need for EU action

WHO report on tuberculosis highlights need for EU action

Last week the World Health Organisation (WHO) released their seventeenth global report on tuberculosis, providing a comprehensive and up-to-date assessment of the TB epidemic and progress in implementing and financing TB prevention, care and control.  Positive steps have been made in tackling TB globally. Findings from the report indicate that progress has and is being made in a number of areas. It notes: access to TB care has expanded substantially since the mid-1990s; progress towards global targets for reductions in TB cases and deaths continues; there has been further progress in implementing collaborative TB/HIV activities; innovations in diagnostics are being implemented, and that the development of new drugs and new vaccines is also progressing. This progress is, of course, welcome news. However, TB remains a major global health problem, ranking only second to HIV/AIDS as the leading cause of death from an infectious disease. Latest estimates show that there were almost 9 million new TB cases in 2011 and 1.4 million TB deaths. As the report notes, this is despite the availability of treatment that will cure most cases of TB. Worryingly, progress in responding to multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) remains slow. On a purely European outlook, this worry is exacerbated More…

TBEC works with Romanian civil society to develop advocacy plan for TB

TBEC works with Romanian civil society to develop advocacy plan for TB

Following the TB Europe Coalition’s visit to Romania last year, the Coalition found itself collaborating with Romanian Angel Appeal (RAA), a charity working on health issues and a principal recipient of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. RAA organised an advocacy training for members of the Stop TB Partnership Romania and asked TBEC to help facilitate the two-day workshop. During the course of the workshop, it became clear that there is a lot of concern regarding the current TB situation in Romania, particularly around drug-resistant TB. Jonathan Stillo, a medical anthropologist studying TB in Romania who has recently joined TBEC, has described how Romania has one of the worst treatment success rates for multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) in the world. Jon explained why: “This is due to a number of factors ranging from a severe lack of national funding and frequent drug stock-outs to stigmatization and a lack of knowledge about the disease and the severity of the situation, even among decision-makers.” Members of TBEC were able to see this for themselves during a visit to the drug-resistant TB ward at a hospital in Bucharest. There, they met two young girls in their early 20s, both appearing otherwise More…

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