This pilot project aims to scale up the access and coverage of the presumptive and MDR-TB patients to Universal Drug Susceptibility Test (UDST). Moreover, it aims to build stronger linkages from prioritized high load Designated Microscopic Centres (DMCs) to districts Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests (NAATs) and subsequently develop linkages to centrally placed Intermediately Reference Laboratory (IRL) to address dropoutrates and optimize treatment
The project is operational in six high burden & challenging areas in Telangana namely Hyderabad, Jayashankar,Bhupalapally, Mulugu, Asifabad, Gadwal and Wanaparthy.
The project adopts an approach of reducing the time gap between the collections of samples and reaching them to the CBNAAT sites of the corresponding districts by using the services of specimen collection & transportation agent (SCT Agent) and local courier agencies for Reports delivery, treatment initiation & Follow up.
Md. Abid (46 years), from a middle-class family in Delhi, had co-infection of HIV and TB and taken the TB treatment for six months. When the TB symptoms resurfaced after some years, he went to a private hospital for treatment and underwent a CBNAAT test. As he was found to be MDR positive, his report was sent to the DRTB team.
A DRTB coordinator linked him to a government hospital in Shahdara after convinced him about the benefits of undergoing the treatment. As there was no facility to test blood, Abid was sent to another hospital for the test but was denied the test due to his HIV status. The coordinator ensured that the testing was done in another facility and took him to the DOTS supervisor. The coordinator counseled and motivated him to overcome self-stigma, take his HIV drugs regularly and start his MDR TB treatment. Abid is on the path to recovery now.