FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2016

Stop TB 2011-2015 plans to save more than one million lives

According to the Global Plan to Stop TB 2011-2015, as set out by the Stop TB Partnership and UNAIDS, by scaling up already available methods, the organizations could save a million people’s lives.

The plan revolves around preventing those with HIV from dying of tuberculosis. A scenario presented in the plan would be to reduce the number of deaths by 80 percent, which would yield 1,040,000 lives saved.

One goal of the plan is to make health services more widely available for patients. Less than a third of people living with HIV sought care for TB at a clinic in 2010. Another goal is to raise the quality of TB care, improving the cure rate from 70 percent in 2010 to 85 percent in 2015.

Another goal is to provide testing for both HIV and TB in countries where both diseases are prevalent to everyone in the population every three years. People who test positive for HIV and are also found to have TB should start the treatment for the disease immediately and after two weeks on the treatment they should begin ART. The Stop TB Partnership has a goal to have 80 percent of TB cases among those living with HIV be detected and treated by the end of 2015.

In addition, the Stop TB Partnership has the goal to protect those with HIV from becoming infected with TB with a daily dose of isoniazid, raising the percentage of those with HIV receiving treatment to 30 percent. The organization also said that providing ART treatment as soon as blood tests show a CD4 count below 350 will also prevent deaths.

The organization estimates that to reach the goal of saving a million lives by 2015 will cost $790 million, which includes improved access to care, HIV testing and screening every three years, TB care and preventive treatment with isoniazid.