The emergence of resistance to anti-tuberculosis (TB) drugs, particularly of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB), has become a major public health problem worldwide and an obstacle to effective global TB control. Although available data indicate an overall low level of drug resistance in the southern Pacific, alarmingly high levels in some Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs), especially the Micronesian, have been observed.
In response, a working group of experts from the technical agencies (WHO, CDC and SPC) and from the network of Pacific TB reference Laboratories was established to develop a framework to address MDR-TB in the Pacific.
The framework is intended to offer simple and clear guidance to National TB Programme (NTP) managers and public health officials from the PICTs on critical aspects of MDR-TB treatment and case management, emphasizing an urgent network response and building on PATLAB and clinical partnerships.
Key components of the framework are the diagnosis of MDR-TB, the urgent response plan, management of MDR-TB cases and their contacts, infection control measures and monitoring and evaluation to promote a standardised and harmonised approach throughout the PICTs, while taking into account the unique aspects of MDR-TB treatment and management in the Pacific islands.
An electronic version of the framework is available on this website.
Last Updated on Friday, 25 June 2010 14:16