The implementation science project, Achieving TB Control in Zambia through Scale-up of Innovative Diagnostic Tools and Proven Active TB Case-Finding Interventions, will conduct systematic health facility and community-based case-finding interventions complemented by highly-sensitive screening and diagnostic tools to initiate a sustained increase in TB case detection in high-burden settings. The project will be implemented in collaboration with the Zambian Ministry of Health and the National Tuberculosis Programme.
Zambia is among the thirty highest TB burden countries globally but has low TB case detection of 58%. Promising diagnostic tools such as Xpert MTB/Rif have shown a limited impact on TB treatment outcomes when placed in health facilities because health system and patient-level barriers to accessing screening services are not addressed. To reach the desired TB detection and treatment impact, placement of highly-sensitive tools must be accompanied with interventions that allow maximal patient access to screening, diagnostic, and treatment services closer to home. This project will target ‘high-risk for TB’ Lusaka peri-urban dwellers in George compound through community awareness raising activities in combination with community and facility-level active TB case-finding and proven screening procedures.
The project is expected to:
- increase community awareness resulting in increased demand for TB screening
- increase knowledge about TB/HIV among healthcare workers
- increase TB screening in all health facility departments with use of exit screening and cough monitors
- reduce time to TB diagnosis
- strengthen contact tracing through use of a combination of screening algorithms to ensure that only high-risk patients get a definitive TB diagnostic test. Use of highly sensitive screening and diagnostic tools at the community level will allow maximal access to TB diagnosis.
The Achieving TB Control in Zambia through Scale-Up of Innovative Diagnostic Tools and Proven Active TB Case-Finding Interventions project is supported by the Stop TB Partnership’s TB REACH initiative and is funded by the Government of Canada and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Principal Investigator is Dr Monde Muyoyeta MBChB, PhD, Director of CIDRZ TB Programmes.