U.S. Government Global TB Strategy: Accelerate Research & Innovation

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Accelerate Research and Innovation

Research has made great strides in our understanding of tuberculosis (TB) and the translation of research funding into the development of new drugs, vaccines and diagnostics, but new tools are still not yet widely available. Further progress requires a two-pronged approach:

  • Continue support for fundamental research, the development of new tools, and approaches for detecting, treating and preventing TB
  • Help improve program impact and introduction of new tools through operational and implementation research

Improving Diagnostics and Labs in Zambia

A USAID-supported lab in Zambia uses new technology to improve TB diagnosis.
A USAID-supported lab in Zambia uses new technology to improve TB diagnosis.
TB Care Zambia

With some of the highest TB-HIV co-infection rates in the world, Zambia is addressing the issue by scaling up implementation of the Three I’s. The Three I’s are: early identification and treatment of TB, isoniazid preventive therapy (IPT), and infection control activities. The Xpert diagnostic is an integral part of the Three I’s initiative and central to intensified case-finding efforts and enhanced TB screening.

Xpert is a high-sensitivity diagnostic technology, used to better diagnose drug-sensitive and drug-resistant TB. A district “hub and satellite” model is being implemented with the use of the Xpert diagnostic test. To expand the reach of the laboratories, the satellite facilities transport specimens to the “hub” to fast-track access to this new diagnostic. Four provinces with high co-infection rates were selected for implementation of activities, including IPT provision and infection control measures. A total of 29 health care facilities, 14 laboratories and 8 prisons in 11 administrative districts have implemented these intensified activities. In some districts, prison screening has also been established, and specimens enter into the “hub” model from each prison satellite facility. Read the full story.

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Last updated: February 23, 2016

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