18 January 2012
By Kounteya Sinha & Mahendra Kumar Singh
New Delhi India
India, which holds the unenviable record of being the world’s Tuberculosis (TB) capital, is set to increase financial allocation for its fight against the air–borne disease by over 400%.
As against Rs 1440–crore budget for TB control in the 11th five year Plan, the Union health ministry’s working group has prepared a Rs 5825–crore programme for the 12th Plan.
India accounts for onefifth (21%) of the global incidence, or an estimated 2 million cases. In terms of incidence, India is 17th among 22 high–burden countries, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The country has spent nearly $80 million on TB control activities during the period 2007–12.
One of the main components of the 12th Plan will be the national scale–up for diagnosis and treatment of drug resistant TB — both multi–drug resistant and extremely drug resistant.
According to the ministry’s plan, 43 Culture and Drug susceptibility testing (CDST) laboratories will be established by 2013, while another 30 CDST labs will be established sectors through public private partnerships by 2015.
The ministry intends to roll out complete geographical coverage of MDR–TB treatment services up to district level by 2013. Around 120 DOTS Plus sites will be identified by 2013 each of which will cater to 10 million population for initial management of MDR–TB. The ministry plans to develop evidencebased treatment guidelines for TB cases resistant to drugs other than Rifampicin.
The ministry has set targets for 2012—2017. India’s TB programme proposes to treat 83 lakh TB patients, including 1.2 lakh TB patients for MDR TB.
Among HIV–infected TB patients, 90% will be provided ART during TB treatment to reduce death. Targets also include 90% notification rate for all cases, 90% success rate for all new and 85% for retreatment cases.
The 12th Plan document says, “The current phase of TB programme will finish by March, 2012. The total budgeted amount for the period 2012–17 is Rs 582,528 lakh, of which there is committed funding from the Global Fund and UNITAID to the tune of Rs 117,087 lakh.”