Global Health Programs: Global Tuberculosis Elimination
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), through the Division of Tuberculosis Elimination’s International Research and Programs Branch and Global Laboratory Activity, works to improve the quality of tuberculosis (TB) control programs internationally and provides leadership and coordination of CDC activities in countries with a high burden of TB. Approximately one third of the world’s population is infected with TB. Each year, nearly 9 million people globally become sick with TB and there are about 2 million TB-related deaths. TB also is the leading cause of death among people who are HIV-infected.
Where We Work
- South Africa
CDC and USAID work closely in support of USG contributions to global TB control. CDC provides critical technical support to international partners, including the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and Ministries of Health, on epidemiology and surveillance (including drug resistant TB), laboratory strengthening, and clinical/operational research that evaluates promising diagnostic and treatment strategies and informs the efficient use of new approaches to TB care. CDC also funds the TB Trials Consortium and the TB Epidemiologic Studies Consortium to fill current TB knowledge gaps in TB diagnostics, TB treatment regimens, case detection, and monitoring.CDC provides leadership in public health advocacy for TB prevention and develops models for the diagnosis and treatment of multidrug resistant TB (MDR TB) in countries with high rates of drug resistance. CDC provides technical support and builds capacity for implementation of Directly Observed Treatment Short course (DOTS), particularly in those countries that contribute significantly to the U.S. TB burden.
Public Health Impact
- From 2004 through 2009, CDC conducted a trial to determine whether 36 months of Isoniazid Preventive Therapy (IPT) is more effective in preventing TB disease among HIV-infected adults than the routinely prescribed six month treatment regimen. The results showed that 36 months of IPT is superior to 6 months of treatment in highly TB-endemic settings, that antiretroviral therapy in combination with IPT is beneficial, and that use of the tuberculin skin test to determine IPT eligibility is more important than less important.
- In 2007 and 2008, CDC conducted research in Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam that showed programmatic changes are needed to improve the diagnosis of TB in people with HIV. Research findings informed the World Health Organization (WHO) which revised international guidelines to simplify TB screening in HIV-infected persons.