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Fact Sheet

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CDC’s Role in Preventing Extensively Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis (XDR TB)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is collaborating with other federal agencies and international partners to raise awareness and enhance strategies for TB prevention worldwide by

  • Strengthening TB services for people living with HIV/AIDS

    The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), through funding and technical support, helps host countries promote early access to anti-retroviral therapy (ART) among HIV-infected TB patients; strengthen laboratory infrastructure, including promotion of rapid adoption of new TB diagnostics (e.g., XpertMTB/RIF) to ensure early diagnosis and appropriate TB treatment; promote intensified TB case finding and linkage to TB diagnosis and treatment among people living with HIV/AIDS; and roll-out and scale-up of TB infection control best practices. Through PEPFAR support, host countries are working through national Ministries of Health to improve patient management of co-infected patients to conduct surveillance for drug-resistant TB, and to strengthen monitoring and evaluation efforts.

  • Assembling and deploying outbreak response teams

    Teams of subject matter experts from CDC are prepared to be rapidly deployed to help host country governments and the World Health Organization (WHO) when outbreaks occur or other needs are identified.

  • Improving access to TB drugs

    As a founding member of the Green Light Committee, CDC helped to increase access to quality-assured, lower-cost second-line drugs to treat drug-resistant TB. After the original Green Light Committee was decentralized in 2011, CDC continues to serve on regional Green Light Committees.
  • Developing international TB testing standards

    These recommendations are being designed to ensure more accurate and rapid detection and treatment of drug-resistant TB. They will include standards for second-line drug susceptibility testing, new anti-TB drugs, and better diagnostic testing.

  • Building capacity of health care providers

    By providing technical support and training, CDC helps to build the capacity of frontline health care providers to diagnose and ensure completion of treatment, which aids in preventing drug resistance.

  • Reconvening the Federal TB Task Force

    This task force was originally created to respond to the emergence of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR TB) in the U.S. in the 1990s. In 2009, the Federal TB Task Force developed an action plan to combat XDR TB.

  • Providing technical assistance to expand program capacity

    CDC and partners are working directly with host countries to implement improved infection control measures, rapid case detection, effective treatment, and drug resistance surveillance.

  • Supporting TB communication and education efforts

    Information on XDR TB is being disseminated regularly and widely. This information is regularly updated on the CDC and partner websites, as well as being presented at national and international conferences and events.

  • Quantifying the magnitude and causes of XDR TB

    CDC scientists, in collaboration with our international partners, quantified the prevalence of and risk factors for XDR TB at research sites in 9 countries. Further analysis will provide the first data on the emergence of XDR TB among patients being treated for MDR TB.

Note: In addition to CDC, U.S. government partners include the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Tuberculosis Control Assistance Program (TBCAP), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Other domestic partners include the National Tuberculosis Controllers Association (NTCA) and local and state TB programs. International partners include the World Health Organization (WHO), the Stop TB Partnership, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IUATLD), national TB programs, and ministries of health.

Additional Information

Extensively Drug-resistant Tuberculosis (XDR TB)

CDC. Extensively Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis - United States, 1993—2006

CDC. Plan to Combat Extensively Drug –Resistant Tuberculosis . MMWR 2009; 58 (No. RR–3).