World TB Day 2020
Each year on March 24, CDC joins the global community to recognize World Tuberculosis (TB) Day – an important moment to unite in renewed commitment to ending TB, an airborne disease that knows no borders.
In partnership with host-country governments, CDC is on the frontlines helping to sustain country-led efforts and to drive progress in this effort, bringing to bear a combination of scientific expertise and on-the-ground experience in diagnosing, curing, and preventing all forms of TB at home and around the world.
CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield discusses progress to date in the fight against TB and the need to accelerate efforts to control this epidemic at home and abroad.
World TB Day is observed annually on March 24th to commemorate Dr. Robert Koch’s announcement of his discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacillus that causes tuberculosis (TB). Worldwide, TB remains the world’s deadliest infectious disease killer with an estimated 10 million people developing TB disease each year, and approximately 4,100 persons losing their lives every day. Globally, CDC is on the frontlines in the world’s highest burden countries to find, cure, and prevent all forms of TB. Our work helps to expand access to improved diagnostic methods; strengthen and expand laboratory capacity, surveillance systems, and prevention and treatment programs; and build workforce and research capacity.
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Transforming the Fight to End TB Around the Globe
The global community has made substantial progress and investments in support of global initiatives to end TB. Between 2000 and 2018, more than 58 million lives were saved through global TB efforts. Today, we stand at a critical juncture in the fight to end TB worldwide. It has been almost two years since the historic United Nations High Level Meeting on TB, when Member States committed to meeting the following targets by 2022: treating 40 million people, including 3.5 million children with TB and 1.5 million people with drug-resistant TB; and providing TB preventive treatment (TPT) to 30 million people. Read More
CDC on the Frontlines
CDC stands at the forefront of global efforts to find, cure, and prevent TB.
Faces from the Frontlines
View images and read stories of those at the forefront of CDC’s global TB response as part of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) – individuals whose efforts and innovations are helping to transform the TB epidemic.”
IT’S TIME, END TB!
World TB Day commemorates the date in 1882 when Dr. Robert Koch announced his discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria that causes TB. This year’s World TB Day theme “It’s TIME!” highlights CDC’s efforts to eliminate TB in the United States and around the world.
World TB Day MMWR
An analysis of global TB surveillance data found that in 2018, an estimated 10 million persons with incident TB and 1.5 million TB-related deaths occurred worldwide, representing 2% and 5% declines from 2017.
New research highlights CDC’s leadership in strengthening TB surveillance, guidelines, and laboratory systems worldwide.
- A recent CDC analysis published in the Bio Med Central Medical journalexternal icon evaluated the impact of interventions on early antiretroviral therapy (ART) mortality. Results show the interventions, aimed at strengthening intensified case finding, combined with active tracing to support patient retention were associated with increased TB case finding and lower early ART mortality.
- In a recent study published in The Lancetexternal icon, the Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) Study Group found TB to be among the top ten causes of pneumonia among hospitalized children under five years of age without HIV infection. This study, completed in African and Asian countries, continues to inform efforts to develop stronger diagnostics and treatment for children with TB as well as efforts to develop an effective vaccine.
- In a recent study published in Emerging Infectious Diseasesexternal icon journal, researchers conducted a meta-analysis for treatment outcomes among children with bacteriologically confirmed extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) from 1999-2013. These fourteen studies included detail of only 37 cases of XDR-TB over a 15-year period, underscoring the lack of data regarding the diagnosis and treatment of children with this most severe form of TB. However, more than 80% of the 37 children included in this study had favorable treatment outcomes with mortality rates significantly lower than adults with XDR-TB, which shows promise for successfully treating XDR-TB in children. Further evaluation of effective and safe regimens for children with XDR-TB is needed, along with better data collection for children with drug-resistant TB.
- In a recent study published in the International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Diseaseexternal icon, researchers aimed to assess current status of Tuberculosis preventive treatment (TPT) implementation in countries supported by the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). TPT was included in national guidelines in 33 (94%) PEPFAR countries, but only 21 (60%) reported nationwide programmatic TPT implementation. Study authors highlight improved leadership and coordination between HIV and TB programs as factors required for successful TPT scale up.
Global TB Elimination Champions
On World TB Day 2020, CDC’s “Global TB Elimination Champions” highlights organizations, individuals, and initiatives that have made meaningful contributions to end TB around the world. Click on the drop-down links below for more information on the unique contributions of these TB champions toward ending global TB.
As part of the Government of Namibia’s Ministry of Health and Social Services, the Namibia National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Program has taken a proactive role in training health care workers to use point-of-care lipoarabinomannan (LAM) urine tests to improve TB diagnosis. By 29 February 2020, six of the fourteen regions in Namibia will be trained in using TB-LAM. Three regions that have completed the TB-LAM training so far have already identified persons with TB who would have been missed by conventional diagnostic methods. For its important efforts to drive down TB incidence and end TB in our lifetime, Namibia’s NTLP is recognized as a Global Tuberculosis Champion.
Daniel Magesa leads U.S. Government, host government and partner engagement to scale up Tuberculosis Preventive Treatment (TPT) among people living with HIV through capacity building and using data to inform programmatic action. Through his efforts, more clients have both initiated and completed TPT. Tanzania’s overall TPT completion rate has improved from 25.8% in 2017 to 86.4% today. Because his efforts play a critical role in reducing TB transmission and saving lives, Dr. Magesa is recognized as a Global Tuberculosis Champion.
In April 2019, CDC Ethiopia implemented a Tuberculosis Preventive Treatment (TPT) Acceleration campaign aimed at improving TPT uptake and completion rates. Following the implementation, 114 high load facilities saw significant improvement in TPT uptake including a ten-fold increase in Addis Ababa. Due to their commitment and contribution in planning and implementing innovative approaches to accelerate TPT at high antiretroviral treatment (ART) client load facilities in Ethiopia, CDC Ethiopia’s team members Beniam Feleke, Tefera Girma, Fana Tefera, Steven Becknell are recognized as Global Tuberculosis Champions.
Despite a decline in TB notification in Botswana, TB/HIV comorbidity remains high at 50 percent. Although TPT guidelines previously existed, they were not widely supported, which meant there was almost no TPT implementation for nearly a decade. In April 2019, CDC Botswana leadership and country stakeholders reintroduced TPT guidelines which were quickly implemented and brought to scale. Due to this recent scale-up, Botswana is now on track to initiate 100,000 persons living with HIV on TPT in 2020. Because of their commitment to scaling up TPT in Botswana, CDC Botswana’s team—Dinah Ramaabya, Bornapate Nkomo, Goabaone Rankgoane, Cynthia Caiphus, Chawangwa Mogongo, and Tefera Agizew— are recognized as Global Tuberculosis Champions.
In 2014, Neo Hutiri was diagnosed with TB and started his treatment at a public clinic in Bophelong township in Vanderbijlpark, located in Gauteng province south of Johannesburg. During his treatment, his biggest challenge was the long waiting times at the clinic. After losing over three hours of his time each day, and seeing other patients have to miss work just to collect their medicine, Neo was motivated to develop an innovation for access to medicine in South Africa’s healthcare system. The passionate Industrial Engineer combined his skills and lived experience to invent the ‘Pelebox’, a system that enables patients to collect prescribed medication within seconds. Healthcare workers securely stock digital lockers with prepackaged prescription refills, and patients access their medicine discretely using their mobile devices at the locker. Due to Neo’s passion, innovation and dedication to expanding access to TB treatment in South Africa, he is recognized as a Global Tuberculosis Champion.
Katlego Motlhaoleng, a TB/HIV Public Health Specialist at CDC South Africa, dedicates her work towards stakeholder engagement aimed at strengthening TB education and awareness among health care workers. As she sees it, information dissemination is key to solving the world’s most pressing health problems including here in South Africa. Katlego recently led a TB session at the South African Young Academy of Science that prompted discussions on how to shape the quality of health care delivery; increase access to care and improve outcomes for patients with TB. After the session, healthcare workers gained the knowledge and skills to benefit the TB/HIV field and public health. Because of Katlego’s commitment to the strengthening TB education and awareness, she is recognized as a Global Tuberculosis Champion.
The Tuberculosis Preventive Treatment (TPT) Surge Committee in Zambia includes representatives from Ministry of Health of Zambia, provincial health and tertiary care facilities, civil society, and United States’ government agencies. This committee has galvanized political will at the highest levels of government and throughout the community and put into place the resources and support needed to massively scale-up of TPT so every Zambian living with HIV can access this life-saving treatment. Already, their efforts have seen three-fold increases in TPT provision in the early Pathfinder facilities with a nationwide launch of their program set for World TB Day 2020. The committee has committed to providing TPT to more than 700,000 people living with HIV in Zambia by the end of 2020. Zambia’s TPT Surge Committee—Dr. Patrick Lungu, Dr. Lloyd Mulenga, Dr. Maureen Simwenda, Dr. Monde Muyoyeta, Ernest Mwila, Dr. Cirspin Moyo, Dr. James Simpungwe, Dr. Nancy Kassesse, Dr. Rehab Chimzizi, Morton Khunga, Dr. Luunga Ziko, Mwanashimbala Boyd, Brittany Moore—are recognized as Global TB Champions.
Community health volunteers are the backbone of efforts to find and cure cases of TB, and this is especially true in the rural, mountainous regions of Eswatini. Through community services programs overseen by Joyce Sibanda in Eswatini, community health workers like Sifiso Nzima are given bicycles that allow them to venture out to hard-to-reach areas to visit families affected by TB. This outreach allows for follow-up visits, screening of household contacts, and supportive counseling. During one such visit, Sifiso identified a two-year old girl who had contracted TB from her father. He facilitated her evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment. Sifiso supports dozens of families each year and is part of the reason Eswatini’s TB incidence and mortality rates continue to fall as more people with TB are found and cured. Sifiso bikes hundreds of kilometers each month to visit families affected by TB, providing screening, support and advice because he’s seen the impact TB has had on his community, and he believes we must do all that we can to end TB now. Because of Joyce and Sifiso’s important work to end TB in their community, they are recognized as Global TB Champions.
Eligayehu Damtew has worked in TB elimination for 12 years now. She has dedicated her life to eliminating TB by supporting projects including: TB education and health-related HIV prevention, and TB treatment and support programs. For over a year now, she has been working as Program Manager at Love in Action Ethiopia (LIAE), a not-for-profit organization that aspires to improve the quality of life in the rural and urban areas of Ethiopia. LIAE does this by supporting the community members’ efforts with minimum external intervention, and by focusing on those who are most-at-risk, marginalized, or underserved. As a Program Manager, Eligayehu has convinced and encouraged all satellite office staff to incorporate TB elimination as a cross-cutting issue. Because of her efforts, the staff at LIAE has included TB as one of the project activities during the planning and mainstreaming of TB during training, peer education and mass awareness provision. For her commitment to raising community awareness and help in changing attitudes towards TB, Eligayehu is recognized as a Global TB Champion.
Dr. Weyenga is an expert in Tuberculosis TB prevention and control and has worked with national and local stakeholders to advise on the latest approaches to ending TB, particularly through Kenya’s prison system and the roll-out of TB preventive therapy (TPT). Through Dr. Weyenga’s expert input in national guidelines and implementation, Kenya scaled-up TPT from 10,000 to over 490,000 from 2014 to 2016. This number increased to 900,000 in December 2018. Dr. Herman Weyenga’s efforts demonstrate that “It’s Time” to end TB by strengthening education and awareness of TPT among health care providers in Kenya’s prison systems. Because of his efforts to spread the message that “It’s Time” to end TB through global TB prevention practices to educating health workers in Kenya’s prisons, Dr. Weyenga is recognized as a Global TB Champion.
Miss Jyothi is the hub agent for three corporate hospitals located in Hyderabad India, working on the Joint Effort for Elimination of Tuberculosis (JEET) project. She visits the hospitals every day and educates patients on the pros and cons of sample collection for early diagnosis and management of TB. She is diligent and courteous to all the patients she works with, and coordinates with the treatment teams to improve diagnostic testing and the overall health of TB patients. Her work in sample collection and dispatch for appropriate investigation has enhanced the specificity and sensitivity of sample collection for TB diagnosis in Hyderabad hospitals, ultimately improving the results of diagnosis reports. Due to her hard work to reduce the prevalence and incidence of TB in India, Miss Jyothi is recognized as a Global TB Champion.
Let’s Unite to End TB in Guam is a community engagement effort with private healthcare providers to increase TB diagnosis and referral on the Island. Let’s Unite to End TB in Guam training increased collaboration between private healthcare providers and TB program in the Health Department which led to an increase in TB diagnoses and referrals. In the four months following the training, 49 suspect cases were referred from the private providers of which 39 were confirmed as active TB cases. Because of their commitment and efforts to unite on one front and end TB in our lifetime, the members of Guam’s TB team— Chima D. Mbakwem, Janna W. Manglona, Alice M. Cuenca, Juan Santiago, Ester D. Bilon, Anne Marie G. Santos, Chee Kin Lam, Marsa Meter—are recognized as Global TB Champions.
CDC’s Division of Global HIV & TB offers these resources, which can be shared across various networks in the lead-up to World TB Day and year-round.
This brief overview describes CDC’s response to the global threat of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis
An overview of CDC’s global TB efforts and return on investments in responding to one of the world’s greatest health threats