Government announces daily drug regimen for Tuberculosis

J.P.-Nadda
J.P.-Nadda

New Delhi, Nov 17: The Health Ministry on Friday changed its the treatment strategy for Tuberculosis (TB) from thrice a week to daily drug regimen using fixed dose combinations (FDC) under the Revised National TB Control Programme (RNTCP).

As per the Ministry, the change will bring transformation in the approach to tackling with this disease which claims about 4.2 lakh deaths every year.

“The daily FDC anti-TB drugs will be made available free of cost to private pharmacy or at private practitioners to dispense to TB patients who seek care in private sector, depending upon the convenience of patients and practitioners,” said a Ministry statement.

The government will take the new initiative forward with all the top hospitals, Indian Medical Association, Indian Academy of Pediatrics and other professional medical associations to expand the access to daily FDC to all TB patients.

The key specification of this treatment strategy is use of Ethambutol in continuation phase for all patients.

The other benefits are that FDC tablets will reduce pill burden (as against separate seven tablets previously), child-friendly formulations as dispersible tablets and use of Information Technology (IT)-enabled treatment adherence support system.

WHO Global TB Report, 2017 has reported that incidence of TB has declined from 28.2 lakh to 27 lakh and mortality by 60,000 over the last one year.

Wefornews Bureau 

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