24 June 2015 - Bangkok, Thailand - The second of four regional consultations on the Global Plan to Stop TB 2016-2020 reinforced the importance for a paradigm-shift in the way TB is fought in countries, underlying the importance of engaging the private sector, the need for community-led demand and for innovations in care delivery.
The regional consultations are built alongside the Global Fund Partnership Forum, which ensures building synergies and enabling cross-fertilization between the Global Fund Strategy 2017-2021 and the Global Plan to Stop TB 2016-2020. It also ensures a wider and diversified participation in order to reach a wide range of stakeholders for input.
The current Global Plan represents the investment case and the advocacy tool of the first five years of the WHO End TB Strategy that goes up to 2035.
The participants discussed the need to evolve and change the way in which we work if we really want to End TB - by introducing new thinking, innovations, approaches and ensuring that all interventions include a patient-centered approach.
In order to assist countries in turning the WHO End TB Strategy into concrete operational plans for the period 2016 - 2020, the Global Plan 2016-2020 presents different investment packages across different country settings, costs associated and suggests approaches for future TB efforts including a meaningful engagement with the private sector. It looks at the research and development areas for TB, pipelines and needs of funding to advance the development and roll-out of new tools. It includes communities, key populations and people affected by TB by putting them at the centre of the entire thinking of TB efforts.
The Plan has taken inspiration from the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) Health Minister’s Declaration of December 2014. This declaration urges the BRICS nations to achieve three 90% targets for their countries’ TB activities by 2020. The Global Plan expanded and adapted these targets to the global context as follow and articulated it as 90-(90)-90 targets: 1. Find at least 90% of all TB people with TB in the population that require treatment and place them on appropriate therapy (first line, second line as well as preventive therapy); 2. As a part of the effort to reach 90% of all people with TB, make a special effort to reach at least 90% of the key population groups - the most vulnerable, underserved, at risk populations in countries; and 3. Reach at least 90% treatment success through affordable treatment services, promoting adherence and social support.
During the forum, participants had several recommendations on how to refine and what should be done to achieve each of the 90s.
On discussing private sector engagement, participants stressed the need for regulatory approaches, incentives and revenues, business models, consumer demand and marketing, along with increased political commitment for working with the private sector. Other points made included not having a top down model from governments to the private sector, but a jointly developed model that respects the business models of the private sector. Additionally, the role of interface agency, the need to adapt to local settings, the use of technology and integration of TB with other health programmes within private sector models were also highlighted, as was accepting the fact that revenue generation by the private sector in social business models contributes to THE paradigm shift.
The discussions on the key populations underlined the need for better integration of key populations in TB programmes, how to get better data that can guide programmatic interventions and how to ensure that we are evolving with the thinking around working together, as well as placing people affected by TB at the centre of the Global Plan. It underlined as well the inclusion of young people and students in specific interventions.
The need for countries to shape and change their interventions in an innovative manner adjusted to their health systems and epidemiology is essential.
This second regional consultation follows the endorsement and great consensus that was given at the inaugural regional consultation held in May in Addis Ababa. The very positive discussion in Bangkok concluded with topline comments around the need for branding the Plan and using the Global Plan as a main advocacy tool going forward.
The third regional consultation will be held in Istanbul, Turkey on 23 July with the final one scheduled to be held in Buenos Aires in September.
The online public consultation of the Global Plan to Stop TB 2016-2020 is now open to everyone to share information, ideas and experiences, and, will run from 10 June to 10 August 2015. Participants are very much encouraged to provide comments -- based on the top line questions asked -- on the introduction and the seven main chapters that make up the Global Plan.
The Global Plan will launch at the end of the year in Cape Town, South Africa at the 46th Union World Conference on Lung Health.