WHO develops framework for care and control of TB

The World Health Organization and the International Union Against TB and Lung Disease recently developed what they are calling a Collaborative Framework for Care and Control of Tuberculosis and Diabetes as a means of consolidating efforts against the life-threatening illnesses.

The framework represents recommendations based on the evidence collected by three separate reviews and a series of consultations with experts in the field. It seeks to establish a mechanism for collaborations between national TB programs and their counterparts for the control and care of diabetes and calls for the improved detection and management of TB in patients with diabetes and the improved detection and management of diabetes in patients with TB.

People with diabetes are two to three more times likely to contract TB. TB is known to worsen glucose control in diabetes patients. In addition, diabetes is known to worsen the clinical course of TB.

Diabetes rates are rising worldwide among low- and middle-income nations that are undergoing rapid economic and social changes. It is also growing in areas where TB has traditionally thrived. There is a concern that rising diabetes rates could potentially jeopardize progress made in the fight against TB, primarily the efforts of the last decade.

The WHO and the Union stressed that the prevention and care of diabetes patients should be a primary concern among those who work on TB control efforts.