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Pediatrics Advocacy

Sentinel Project

Childhood TB Roadmap

Federal Advocacy Meeting

TAG’s TB/HIV project works to accelerate the development and improvement of tools specific to fighting drug-sensitive- (DS-) and drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) in children and to ensure that children have access to prompt and appropriate TB diagnosis and treatment.

Children have been neglected in the fight against TB. TB in children is difficult to diagnose and, as a result, the true burden of DS- and DR-TB in children across the globe is unknown. In addition, the perception that children do not transmit the disease has contributed to global and programmatic neglect of this population. Only recently have children been explicitly included in global and national TB agendas. The World Health Organization’s Global Tuberculosis Report 2012 was the first ever to include a section on children.

TAG works with several groups to promote research and policy development, the creation and implementation of guidelines, and collaboration with relevant partners to achieve zero TB deaths, new infections, stigma, and suffering in children. Partners include the Stop TB Partnership Childhood TB Subgroup; the scientific committee on earlier involvement of children and pregnant women in trials of new TB drugs that has been convened by the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; and the Sentinel Project on Pediatric Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis.

In order to achieve zero child TB deaths, new infections, stigma, and suffering, we urgently need improved diagnostic tests that are better able to detect TB in children, child-friendly formulations of first- and second-line TB drugs, and expedited research to better inform the treatment of children with novel and existing TB drugs. Pediatric TB drug needs are outlined in more detail by Polly Clayden in her article for the spring 2013 issue of TAGline, “TB Drugs for Children,” and gaps in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of DR-TB in children are further detailed in the 2013 collection of stories, We Can Heal: Prevention, Diagnosis, Treatment, Care, and Support: Addressing Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis in Children.

Other Pediatrics Advocacy

Click here to view the poster, “Administering Second-Line Antituberculous Medications to Children with Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis: A Qualitative Study,” presented by Erica Lessem at the 6th International Workshop on Clinical Pharmacology of Tuberculosis Drugs, September 9, 2013 in Denver, Colorado.