Research shows India can shorten tuberculosis treatment

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The Hindu

Recent studies have found that the length of time tuberculosis patients need to stay on their regimen can be reduced from six to four months. Tuberculosis is a dreadful disease with a high mortality, and has consistently been a global health concern. India accounts for around 27% of TB cases worldwide – which is the world’s highest country-wise TB burden – thanks in part to its population of 1.3 billion. In the last decade, the National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme (NTEP), along with the private sector, has successfully found and treated 17.14 million people with TB, including an estimated 1.4 million children. However, the COVID-19 pandemic adversely affected TB  care and has threatened to reverse the gains made in reducing India’s burden. Additionally, the growing problem of drug-resistant TB also threatens the progress we have made in basic disease management.