TREAT TB supports implementation of nine-month regimen in Philippines

This month TREAT TB concluded a two-week technical assistance visit in the Philippines. The visit included a total of eight facility visits in three regions and two workshops in regions where the standard short treatment regimen is now being implemented.

The regimen treats multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) patients with a nine-month regimen, compared to the previous treatment lasting up to 24 months. The treatment was provisionally recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) in May 2016, following years of research by teams from The Union, the Damien Foundation and the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp and other partners.

TREAT TB provides technical assistance to the National TB Programme in the Philippines to support the successful roll-out and implementation of this new treatment protocol, with the goal of significantly improving treatment outcomes for patients with MDR-TB.

The TREAT TB team met with key implementers and managers in the regional facilities to identify and address challenges, particularly those related to treatment interruption, adverse drug reactions, training, supervision and monitoring and evaluation. The team also worked at the regional level to implement proposed strategies to improve programme outcomes, including the development of regional TB medical advisory committees, which would provide clinical management expertise to physicians and nurses.

TREAT TB is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by The Union and Vital Strategies. 

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Read more about The Union's work in South-East Asia