Hyderabad: India’s aim to eliminate tuberculosis by 2025 is laudable but difficult to achieve as the quality of diagnostic centres and treatment procedures continue to be a challenge, according to the cumulative data analysis published in Lancet Global Health.
The data states that eliminating TB will not be possible before 2045 and that 72 per cent reduction in mortality can be seen only by 2035.
A comparison model had been set up using the data of 2015 and it is found that even the reduction in the incidence cannot be achieved before 2030. The fight for India begins from the basic testing where the services of TB testing have to be scaled up. There has to be universal access to drug susceptibility testing and also access to second line of TB drugs.
While targets in India have been set, the ground work with accessibility of services, challenges in completing the treatment continue to be high and that is one of the reasons for multi-drug resistant tuberculosis in India.
The Indian burden of TB comprises 32 per cent of the global tuberculosis deaths. Chest Hospital superintendent Dr Mehboob Khan, explained, “We have to first work towards effectively controlling the disease, reduce the incidence and ensure that there is complete cure. These are the first three steps which have to be achieved in the fight against the disease. There are one lakh missing cases and it becomes very important that this number be brought down.”
The burden of TB in India is high with one in four cases globally. Since 2012, TB is a notifiable disease and the failure to report it attracts Sections 269 and 270 of Indian Penal Code.
Dr Subramanian Swaminathan, senior consultant for infectious diseases, said there was a major change in the treatment regime of TB with medicines being given three times in a week. This has shown that there is adherence to the treatment.
“Despite this the several challenges in drug compliance continue and for this it means that the resistance which is developing due to the disease has to be reduced. The burden of the disease once reduced will bring in better results. Hence we have to check that the infection does not spread. Controlling it is very important to tackle the disease.”
- One untreated or improperly treated case can spread TB to 15 people.
- TS has recorded 155 new cases in 2018 and 178 new cases in 2019.
- TS government has taken up work with Indian Medical Association to tackle TB at the district level so that the cases are handled there by doctors, not quacks.