[Issue Brief] Four years and counting

Slow scale-up of newer MDR-TB drugs covers less than 5% in need.
An estimated 600,000 people fell ill with multidrug-resistant (MDR) forms of tuberculosis (TB) in 2016, including 110,000 with rifampicin-resistant TB (RR-TB). Only 153,000 cases of MDR-TB were diagnosed, and only 130,000 people began MDR-TB treatment. An estimated 240,000 people died from MDR/RR-TB in 2016.
Conventional MDR-TB treatments last almost 24 months and are associated with severe side effects and poor outcomes. Two newer drugs – bedaquiline and delamanid – can help increase cure rates and reduce mortality, but scale-up is lagging for several reasons. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) estimates that less than 5% of people with MDR-TB who could have benefitted from these lifesaving newer medicines were treated with them in 2016.
This issue brief examines current opportunities to optimise MDR-TB treatment and to address the persistent access challenges that put treatment out of reach for people struggling to survive this deadly disease.
TB Brief Four Years and Counting ENG 2017.pdf
Page updated: 10 October 2017
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