Improving management of Multi-Drug-resistant TB (MDR TB) is a special focus of the TB CARE II project. It is estimated that there are 3,800 MDR TB cases annually in Bangladesh. A large proportion of these cases remain undetected and untreated, potentially increasing the risk of infection in the community.
It is not possible to combat the threat of MDR TB without a synchronized effort to expand national capacity both for diagnosis and treatment. To this end, the TB CARE II project started two new interventions in 2012. The introduction of Gene Xpert technology has been helping a large number of suspected patients with correct and faster diagnosis of drug-resistant TB. The community based approach for management has significantly reduced treatment delays by shortening hospital stays and allowing the patients extended time at home to complete their treatment.
These efforts resulted in a substantial increase in the enrolment of MDR TB patients in treatment in less than two years. This booklet titled ‘Changing Lives of MDR TB Patients’ has been prepared to highlight the impact of MDR TB on patients and their families and to demonstrate the achievements that have been made in improving systems of care. The stories epitomize the trials and tribulations that transpire in the lives of MDR TB patients. We hope these stories will generate awareness about MDR TB and inspire readers to join our fight against TB.