WHO says dip in stocks of TB drugs in India

Last Updated: Fri, Jun 21, 2013 15:20 hrs

New Delhi, June 21 (IANS) The World Health Organisation (WHO) Friday said there was a dip in the buffers stock of anti-tuberculosis (TB) drugs in India, but this would in no way affect treatment of patients.

"There is a dip in the buffer stock of anti-TB drugs. We understand that the government of India has initiated steps to ensure replenishment," Nata Menabde, WHO representative to India, said in a statement here.

However, the statement added that "no drugs are out of stock for adult anti-TB patients for both drug sensitive and drug resistant TB".

WHO provides technical and policy-related support to the government's anti-TB programme.

She said: "The stock of paediatric anti-TB drugs, which is critically low is being augmented through emergency procurement".

For patients who have already started the treatment, India's programme provides one full course of TB drugs for each patient, in patient-wise boxes. "This ensures that there is no interruption of treatment due to drug shortage," she said.

India has one of the largest TB control programme in the world with nearly 1.5 million TB patients placed under treatment every year.

The treatment protocol ensures that the whole course of anti-TB drugs is given free to the patients with intense monitoring and other patient support system.

Since inception, the Revised National TB Control Programme (RNTCP) has evaluated over 55 million people for TB and initiated treatment for over 15.8 million TB patients.

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