Zimbabwe is classified by WHO as a high burden TB and high burden HIV country.  TB incidence was 278 per 100,000 and 68% of TB patients in 2014 were co-infected with HIV.  In 2012, CPT and ART uptake in Zimbabwe was very low – with only 26% of HIV-positive TB patients on CPT and 18% on ART. In 2014, marked improvements were seen with 94% of HIV-positive TB patients on CPT and 86% on ART.

Scaling-Up Coordinated TB/HIV Treatment

In 2012, the TB CARE II project, including URC and its partners Jhpiego and the Global TB Institute (GTBI) undertook a multi-country assessment aimed at identifying some of the programmatic factors that have contributed to success in increasing the numbers of co-infected TB patients accessing ART in a timely manner. The countries selected—South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe—have developed different models for delivering TB and HIV treatment and provide important lessons to guide the further scale-up coordinated TB and HIV treatment. The assessments focused at the service delivery level in sites with evident success in order to elucidate the service delivery models used and the best field practices developed around TB/HIV integration and early initiation of ART. The lessons and practices described in each country assessment have been combined to develop a practical framework to support the implementation of service delivery interventions geared at increasing early initiation of ART for TB patients.

TB in Miners

Due to the factors that are often associated with mining work (prolonged exposure to silica dust, poor ventilation, and exposure to occupational hazards), socio-economic culture of miners (cramped and unsanitary living conditions, limited access to health services, and migratory lifestyle), and high rates of diseases (HIV, and Silicosis) miners are at high risk of developing TB.  Research estimates that 3-7% of miners are becoming ill with TB each year.  To address these issues, TB CARE II is working on strengthening National TB Program staff to develop the first National Strategic Plan on TB for the Mining Community.