Child and Adolescent TB Working Group Objectives
- To promote research and policy development
- To promote the formulation and implementation of guidelines.
- To promote the mobilization of human and financial resources, and collaboration with partners working in relevant fields (including maternal and child health, the extended programme on immunization, and HIV).
- To achieve the goal of decreased childhood TB mortality and morbidity.
Terms of reference
The terms of reference of the Child and Adolescent TB Working Group are:
- Provide global leadership in child and adolescent TB and advocate for the inclusion of the needs of children and adolescents in research, policy development and clinical practices in line with the WHO post-2015 strategy and targets.
- Encourage partners and countries to collect and report better data on children and adolescents with TB, including data on prevention, to better understand the magnitude of the problem of TB among children and adolescents, and to inform advocacy and action.
- Contribute to the development of evidence-based guidance, training and reference materials for health care workers (specific to infants, children and adolescents) which can be adapted to various country situations and assist national TB programmes with training.
- Provide/offer input on the management of children and adolescents with TB during national TB programme reviews in priority countries and, encourage national TB programmes to develop or strengthen national policies, form a working group and work with dedicated staff at all levels of the health care system, including those working in the private sector, to foster local expertise and leadership.
- Provide guidance on critical opportunities for intervention during each of the stages of TB (prevent infection; prevent disease; diagnose disease; treatment; recording & reporting) to reduce morbidity and mortality and use every opportunity to promote implementation of intensified case-finding, contact tracing and preventive therapy to prevent TB among children and adolescents and to advocate for an uninterrupted supply of high-quality anti-TB medicines for children.
- Promote the engagement of key stakeholders in addressing child and adolescent TB (global and national policy makers; relevant national health care programmes including maternal and child health services, HIV services and health education institutions; private health care sector; community-based organisations and NGOs; community leaders; researchers; and advocacy groups), clarify their roles, and, document and disseminate best practices and lessons learned.
- Advocate for the development of integrated family-centred and community centred health services.
- Advocate for TB research to include a special focus on children and adolescents to better understand the fundamental differences between children, adolescents and adults in terms of the underlying immunology, diagnosis, treatment and management of TB and to strengthen evidence on how best to integrate child and adolescent TB interventions into other (child) health services.
- Encourage countries to include the funding requirements for child-specific TB interventions in their National TB Strategic Plans.
- Encourage the research community to improve diagnostic and treatment options for children and adolescents with TB and to include children and adolescents in clinical trials of new diagnostics and drugs at an early stage. Liaise with other Stop TB Partnership working groups and subgroups to this extent.