News

HIV/TB Research meeting held in conjunction with the 19th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections
5 Mar 2012

05 March, 2012 | Seattle, USA

The World Health Organization and Consortium to Respond Effectively to the AIDS/TB Epidemic (CREATE) organized their 6th CROI affiliated HIV/TB research meeting on behalf of the TB/HIV Working Group of the Stop TB Partnership in Seattle, USA on 5 March, 2012. Attended by some 70 participants, including HIV researchers, implementers and public health policy makers, the meeting discussed critical knowledge and research gaps on TB impact and measurement of TB transmission in high HIV burden settings. Convened by Drs Richard Chaisson of John Hopkins University and Haileyesus Getahun of WHO’s Stop TB Department, the meeting was chaired by Dr Diane Havlir, Chair of the TB/HIV Working Group and Dr Gottfried Hirnschall, Director of the HIV/AIDS Department of WHO. For more information please click on the links below.

Agenda | Meeting report | Presentations

Launch of new WHO Policy on collaborative TB/HIV activities
2 Mar 2012

02 March, 2012 | Geneva, Switzerland

Following on from the success of the Interim Policy published in 2004, WHO has today launched its revised policy on collaborative TB/HIV activities. The new policy is based on the latest scientific evidence generated from randomized controlled trials and observational studies in the field of TB and HIV and country experiences implementing the Interim Policy.

The Interim policy provided a highly effective framework for implementing partners and donors to focus their resources. More than 100 countries fully adopted the Interim Policy, measured by HIV testing of at least half of TB patients identified and it is estimated that 910,000 lives have been saved globally. The increased uptake of the interim policy has resulted in more than 60% of the total number of TB patients estimated to have HIV were diagnosed and registered in HIV care in 2010, compared with less than 15% in 2005. TB screening among people living with HIV increased 12-fold from 200 000 in 2005 to 2.3 million in 2010. The number of people living with HIV without active TB receiving isoniazid-preventive therapy increased from 26 000 in 2005 to 180 000 in 2010.

The new policy emphasises the importance of establishing mechanisms for the delivery of integrated TB and HIV services at the same place and time, as well as promoting integration within other health programmes such as maternal and child health and harm reduction services. The update is a compilation of existing WHO guidelines for addressing HIV-related TB. It also includes extensive reviews of the evidence on key questions such as the benefits of HIV testing in patients with presumptive or diagnosed TB, and their partners and families; co-trimoxazole preventive therapy for TB patients living with HIV; earlier initiation of ART at CD4 count higher than 350 cells/mm3 for TB prevention; and models of integrated TB and HIV services.

Implementation of this revised Policy will enable us to make major advances in our efforts to overcome HIV and TB epidemics as set out in the Global Plan to Stop TB and the Global health sector strategy on HIV/AIDS, 2011-2015.

The 2012 WHO Policy on collaborative TB/HIV activities is now available at the following link: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/notes/2012/tb_hiv_guide_20120302/en/index.html

Workshop to accelerate the implementation of revised guidelines on IMCI/IMAI/IMPAC and the Three I’s for HIV/TB
25 Jan 2012

25-27 January 2012 | Lome, Togo

WHO in collaboration with the TB/HIV Working Group and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted a three-day workshop in Lome, Togo to accelerate the implementation of the revised guidelines on IMCI/IMAI/IMPAC and the Three I’s for HIV/TB from 25-27 January 2012. This was the third implementation workshop in the African Region dedicated to such issues, the first being held for Southern African countries in South Africa in March 2011 and the second for East African countries in Uganda in July 2011. The workshop was attended by 66 participants, comprising representatives from National HIV and TB programmes, monitoring and evaluation focal points and civil society from Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Mali, Senegal, Rwanda, Guinea and Togo. The workshop objectives were to present the updated IMAI/IMCI/IMPAC tools, the updated 3 interlinked patient monitoring system and the 2011 guidelines on Intensive TB case-finding and isoniazid preventive therapy; to identify priority actions to improve recording and reporting formats and strengthen monitoring and evaluation and to discuss the role of civil society. The workshop concluded with countries updating their current TB/HIV plans in accordance with the latest WHO recommendations and tools, defining actions that need to be strengthened or scaled up. All countries highlighted the need to strengthen collaboration with mother and child health programmes and the need to introduce TB screening among pregnant women. For more details on the workshop, including agenda and presentations please visit the links below.

Agenda | Report | List of participants | Presentations

16th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA 2011)
8 Dec 2011

4 - 8 December 2011 | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

ICASA 2011 brought together more than 10,000 varied HIV stakeholders from 103 countries, providing an excellent opportunity to network, share experiences and learn about the successes and challenges in implementation and scale-up of TB/HIV collaborative activities. Tuberculosis was particularly well mainstreamed in this year’s conference agenda, as can be seen from the ICASA Roadmap of HIV/TB sessions and presentations. All presentations are now available at the following link.

World AIDS Day, December 2011
21 Nov 2011

World AIDS Day this year is about "Getting to Zero. Zero New HIV Infections. Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS Related Deaths". With almost one in four HIV related deaths attributable to TB globally and up to 50% in some settings, there is no question that TB prevention, diagnosis and treatment will contribute towards zero AIDS related deaths. Thanks to your efforts and commitment, we have observed encouraging progress in the scale-up of collaborative TB/HIV activities recently. The uptake of HIV testing and counselling for TB patients in the African and European regions has been particularly impressive. Similarly in 2010, almost 60% enrolled into HIV care were screened for TB in the African Region, and nearly one out of four eligible people enrolled in HIV care were put on Isoniazid preventive therapy. However, despite evidence based recommendations for providing ART to all TB patients, regardless of CD4 count within the first two weeks of their TB treatment, less than half of the TB patients who were identified with HIV received life saving ART. In the spirit World AIDS Day, we call upon all members of TB/HIV Working Group and friends of TB/HIV to ensure the delivery of integrated TB and HIV services including life saving ART to all people living with HIV.

17th Core Group Meeting of the TB/HIV Working Group
11 Nov 2011

9-11 November 2011 | Beijing, People’s Republic of China

As part of a focus on the Western Pacific region and the People’s Republic of China for 2011, the Core Group of the TB/HIV Working Group held its annual meeting in Beijing from 9-11 November. The meeting was organized by the Secretariat, based at WHO Geneva, in collaboration with the WHO office in the People’s Republic of China and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention of the People's Republic of China. Co-hosted by the Ministry of Health of the People’s Republic of China, the meeting was attended by some 90 participants, comprising Core Group members and representatives from National TB and HIV programmes in Cambodia, Papua New Guinea, the People's Republic of China and Viet Nam and from six high burden provinces in the People's Republic of China. In addition, representatives from key international technical and funding agencies in the region also attended. Meeting participants reviewed progress and shared experience in regional implementation and scale-up of collaborative TB/HIV activities, and learnt about the latest tools to support scale-up as well as breaking research developments.

Agenda EnglishChinese | List of Participants | Report EnglishChinese, | Presentations EnglishChinese

HIV/TB Research meeting held in conjunction with the 6th conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention (IAS 2011)
17 Jul 2011

The Stop TB Department of the World Health Organization and the Secretariat of the TB/HIV Working Group of the Stop TB Partnership in collaboration with the Consortium to Respond Effectively to the AIDS/TB Epidemic (CREATE) convened a meeting in Rome on Sunday 17 July 2011, to promote high level scientific interchange of ideas and research priorities on the development of new and novel anti-TB drugs for people living with HIV with specific issues related to childhood TB and people living with HIV. Held in conjunction with the 6th conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention, the meeting shared new data from ongoing studies, discussed implementation issues and identified critical research questions. For more details on this meeting and for links to the abstracts, added to our Roadmap of HIV/TB Sessions at IAS 2011, please click on the links below:

Meeting report with presentations | Agenda | IAS 2011 HIV/TB Abstracts

Scaling-up the implementation of collaborative TB/HIV activities in the Region of the Americas
8 Jul 2011

7-8 July, 2011 | Panama City, Panama

WHO, in collaboration with the Global TB/HIV Working Group of the Stop TB Partnership, CDC, USAID, UNAIDS and regional civil society representatives convened a two day regional meeting in Panama City between 7-8th July 2011 entitled "Scaling-up the implementation of collaborative TB/HIV activities in the Region of the Americas". Participants from 18 Latin American and Caribbean countries attended, comprising representatives from National Tuberculosis and AIDS Programmes and members of civil society.

The objective of the meeting was to share regional and global experiences and best practices for greater political advocacy, resource mobilization and scale-up in the implementation of collaborative TB/HIV activities and integration of TB and HIV services in the Region of the Americas. Topics discussed include HIV testing among TB patients, the Three I’s for HIV/TB and initiation of ART to reduce the burden of TB among people living with HIV, HIV-associated TB in children and vulnerable populations such as prisoners and drug users, management of MDR-TB in people living with HIV, and community involvement. For more details, please click on the links below:

Agenda (English and Spanish) | Call for Action (English and Spanish) | Presentations

Civil Society Meeting for Accelerating Advocacy on TB/HIV in the Region of the Americas
6 Jul 2011

6 July, 2011 | Panama City, Panama

On 6th July WHO, in collaboration with the Global TB/HIV Working Group of the Stop TB Partnership, regional members of civil society, Treatment Action Group and UNAIDS, convened a meeting aimed at empowering civil society from 15 Latin American and Caribbean countries to advocate for increased access to collaborative TB/HIV services in the region of the Americas.

The meeting aimed to facilitate regional networking opportunities among participants and translate their experiences and concerns about TB/HIV into needs-based advocacy recommendations, as well as to help identify key TB/HIV messages to advocate for during the two day meeting "Scaling-up the implementation of collaborative TB/HIV activities in the Region of the Americas" held subsequently between 7-8 July. For further details, please click on the links below:

Agenda (English and Spanish) | Call for Action (English and Spanish) | Presentations

One million lives can be saved between now and the end of 2015 by preventing and treating Tuberculosis among people living with HIV
6 Jun 2011

A publication outlining the new epidemiological model - Time to act: Save a million lives by 2015 - Prevent and treat tuberculosis among people living with HIV was launched on 6th June in New York as world leaders were convening for the UN High-Level meeting on AIDS. The new model, developed by the World Health Organization, the Stop TB Partnership and UNAIDS, shows it is possible to reduce dramatically HIV/AIDS deaths through TB prevention and treatment. In 2009 almost one in four deaths among people living with HIV were due to TB. The majority of these deaths could have been avoided as TB is both curable and preventable. The model estimates that through the scaled-up implementation of WHO-recommended collaborative TB/HIV activities, it is possible to save a million lives by the end of 2015. In 2010 a joint goal for 2015 was set by the Stop TB Partnership and UNAIDS to halve HIV related TB deaths, compared to 2004 levels. Based on the new model it has been agreed to aim to save a million lives. “Halving TB deaths in people living with HIV by 2015 is possible and is within our reach. We could save up to a million lives by 2015 and bring us one step closer to the UNAIDS vision of Zero AIDS deaths” said UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé.

The document calls for the following actions:

  • Testing for HIV and TB should be provided every three years in places where both diseases are prevalent.
  • Prompt TB treatment needs to be provided to every person living with HIV with active TB - or else treatment to prevent TB.
  • HIV and TB treatment must be accessible and of good quality so that people living with HIV are cured of TB.
  • Antiretroviral therapy (ART) should be started early, which will help prevent TB, since people living with HIV are far less likely to become ill with and die of TB if they begin ART before their immune systems begin serious decline.
  • People who are HIV-positive and diagnosed with active TB should start ART regardless of the status of their immune systems.

The cost of implementing all the elements needed to achieve this is estimated to come to around $790 million a year. Dr Mario Raviglione, Director of the Stop TB Department of WHO said “In the past few years we have made encouraging progress in the fight against TB and also gained clear understanding of what needs to be done to prevent a million deaths from TB among people living with HIV by 2015. Now is the time to apply that knowledge and further intensify our efforts starting with bold leadership of national governments”. This was further echoed by  Dr Jorge Sampaio, the UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy to Stop TB and former President of Portugal, who made a strong appeal during the launch of the publication “There is a surge in awareness about the deadly TB epidemic among people living with HIV, but insufficient action. Now new scientific work has shown that we can prevent a million deaths among people living with HIV by end 2015 by providing integrated HIV and TB care. I call on the world’s leaders to take up this challenge. It is time to take bold action. Not to do so would be an outrage."

Link to the publication | Link to a fact sheet about the model