Stop TB Partnership

CDC Head visits India

07 September 2015 - New Delhi, India - A round table meeting was organized with Dr Tom Frieden, Director, Centre for Disease Control (CDC), Atlanta, USA on 10 August 2015 at Nirman Bhawan, New Delhi to further explore the scope of CDC support to tuberculosis (TB) control in India.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Dr Jagdish Prasad, Director General Health Services (DGHS), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India and was attended by officials from the MoHFW, representatives from the National TB Institutes, representatives from partner agencies and several experts in the field of TB.

Updates were shared regarding current TB control activities in India and newer initiatives being undertaken including the Standards of TB Care in India, the daily regimen pilot in five States, pharmacovigilance, Nikshay - a web-based solution for monitoring of TB patients etc.

The DGHS acknowledged the technical support being provided by the CDC in tackling various diseases globally and added that India is committed to achieving the goal of universal access to quality TB care for all patients. He further said that the RNTCP has come a long way in involving all care providers. In this context, the programme will be piloting the implementation of daily regimen across five States in India covering a population of about 269 million.

Dr Tom Frieden expressed his satisfaction on the recent advances in TB control efforts made by India's Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) and also in the active involvement of all care providers for reaching the goals of universal access for TB care. Dr. Frieden added that the daily regimen pilot was a welcome step towards strengthening TB control activities in India and stressed on the importance of Daily Observed Treatment (DOT) and monitoring to ensure treatment adherence and completion. Dr Frieden assured continued technical support for TB control activities in India.

Dr Sunil D Khaparde, DDG-TB, talked about the newer initiatives and how they link together towards achieving the goals of universal access for quality TB care and the End-TB strategy. He said that RNTCP has been one of the most successful National TB Programmes in the world. As per the Global TB Report 2014, India has achieved the 2015 Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of halting and reversing TB incidence and halving the 1990 level of TB prevalence. The country is well on track to achieving the target of halving the TB mortality rate. Dr Khaparde also acknowledged that there are many challenges currently being faced by the programme including drug resistance, comorbidities, socially and clinically vulnerable groups among others, and the programme is gearing up appropriately to address these effectively.