remains the one of the world's most deadly infectious
diseases, second only to HIV/AIDS. In 2013, the World Health
Organization (WHO) estimated 9 million people became ill with
TB and 1.5 million people died from it. In addition, tuberculosis
remains the leading cause of death in patients living with
HIV/AIDS, killing one out of four co-infected.
If not diagnosed and treated promptly, tuberculosis may be spread via an airborne route to family and community members. Untreated, someone with active tuberculosis will infect an estimated 10 to 15 people per year. (UNAIDS)
Most tuberculosis is curable, but the disease must be diagnosed early and patients with the disease must be started on therapy. Utilizing aggressive screening protocols and "cough monitors," lay persons trained to mobilize communities and facilitate TB diagnosis in communities, we intend to control the tuberculosis in all of the AMPATH service delivery areas.
Today, more than 75,000 symptomatic patients in the AMPATH catchment were screened for TB with an average 12% testing smear positive. AMPATH tests patients visiting the HIV clinic, as well as with the implementation of the home-based counseling and testing program counselors now go door-to-door to test communities for both HIV and TB.
With the advent of Multidrug Resistant (MDR) TB, AMPATH has now created a community-based treatment program, funded in part by the Kenyan Division of Leprosy, TB, and Lung Disease. AMPATH is also working with the Lilly MDR-TB Partnership, which allows programs like AMPATH to offer it patients with MDR-TB access to key MDR-TB drugs.