Class instructor and Student. Photo by Brian Donnelly
In many of the 22 countries that account for more than 80% of TB cases worldwide, CHS and its affiliate,University Research Co., LLC (URC), are supporting anti-TB activities and national TB programs through integrated and innovative approaches to address systemic barriers to effective prevention and treatment. Our work often includes patient-centered approaches to increase case detection and improve treatment adherence.
We support interventions to scale up access to TB diagnostics and laboratories, improve the quality of supervision, and alleviate the human resource crisis by building the capacity of health workers. Through our programs in sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe, we are also working with policy-makers, program managers, and community organizations to address the growing problem of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) and extensively drug resistant (XDR-TB) cases.
URC is assisting the South African government in implementing its National Tuberculosis Strategic Plan. Funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the South Africa TB Program is helping to strengthen local capacity to detect, treat, and prevent TB. The URC team provides assistance in strengthening TB care initiatives at the district and community levels, as well as in strengthening the health system to manage the pressures exerted by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. While the program’s principal focus is at the provincial, district, and community levels, the team also provides assistance at the national level to strengthen critical health systems (e.g., information; supervision; and policies and guidelines for TB, MDR-TB, and XDR-TB prevention and control as well as infection control). The project’s core strategies include capacity building, sustainability, quality of care, and the integration and coordination of services.
Georgia’s health system is undergoing rapid policy and programmatic changes. Since TB and MDR-TB pose a challenge to the country, the USAID Georgia Tuberculosis Prevention Project is working with the Ministry of Health to make sure that quality TB services are provided while Georgia undergoes an era of expanding privatization. The project is contributing to achieving the overall USAID/Georgia and Government of Georgia’s objective to reduce the number of all TB cases, while helping the country achieve its Millennium Development Goals.
Bangladesh ranks sixth among the 22 highest burden TB countries worldwide. Through the TB CARE II project, URC works closely with the Government of Bangladesh and its National TB Program to strengthen the country’s response to the disease and build local capacity to improve universal access to TB diagnosis and treatment.
In Kazakhstan, CHS provided technical assistance and guidelines for Directly Observed Treatment, Short Course Strategy (DOTS) training programs.
CHS evaluated a cost-effective method to build capacity among non-physician clinicians in sub-Saharan Africa for the treatment and prevention of TB and other infectious diseases. A comprehensive surveillance system of 36 health facilities and their patients measured the impact of a novel package of classroom training, distance learning, and on-site support services. Those measurements assessed changes in individual competence, facility performance, and health outcomes brought about by the package.