India achieved record TB notification in 2023

In 2022, India had notified 24,22,121 TB cases, which the India TB report 2023 remarked as a “milestone year for TB surveillance efforts in India, with a record high notification”.

Updated - January 12, 2024 09:50 pm IST

Published - January 12, 2024 08:55 pm IST - CHENNAI

Image used for representation purpose only. With 25,37,235 TB cases notified in 2023, India has bettered the TB notification number achieved in 2022.

Image used for representation purpose only. With 25,37,235 TB cases notified in 2023, India has bettered the TB notification number achieved in 2022.

With 25,37,235 TB cases notified in 2023, India has bettered the TB notification number achieved in 2022. The number of TB cases notified in the public sector in 2023 stood at 16,99,119 while the number of TB cases notified by the private sector was 8,38,116. Whereas the TB notification by the public sector reached 93% of the target, it was 89% in the case of the private sector.

In 2022, India had notified 24,22,121 TB cases, which the India TB report 2023 remarked as a “milestone year for TB surveillance efforts in India, with a record high notification”. TB case notification in 2022 was 13% more than what was achieved in 2021. Due to the pandemic, TB notifications fell sharply in 2020 and 2021. Compared with 2019 when 24,04,815 TB cases were notified before the pandemic began, in 2020, TB notification dropped to 18,05,670; it improved marginally in 2021 when 21,35,830 TB cases were notified.

Also read: A new edge to the fight against tuberculosis

Besides marking a record total TB notification, 2022 also recorded the highest ever TB case notification from the private sector — 7,33,694, which was 77.1% of the target notification. In 2023, the number of TB notifications from the private sector increased further to 8,38,116, with a record 89% of the target.

Despite the increase in TB notifications by the private sector in 2023, the private sector still accounts for only 33% of the total notifications in the country. Yet, the share of TB notifications by the private sector has been the highest ever achieved so far. In 2021, the share of TB notification by the private sector was 32%, which then decreased to 30% in 2022. Except for the dip in 2022, TB notification by the private sector has been slowly but steadily increasing — 21% in 2017, 25% in 2018, 28% in 2019, and 31% in 2020.

Also read: The road to ending tuberculosis 

Despite the steady increase in the private sector TB notification since TB notification became mandatory in 2012, the number of TB cases notified by the private sector has been woefully short of the targets set by the National Strategic Plan 2022-2025. As per the target set by the National Strategic Plan, the TB notification by the private sector was 35% in 2020, 45% in 2021, and 56% in 2022 and 2023. Despite achieving the highest TB notification of 33% in 2023, the notification by the private sector is yet to come anywhere close to the targets set by the National Strategic Plan.

With 50% to 70% of TB patients in India seeking care in the private sector, the percentage of TB cases notified each year is strikingly small. This would mean that tens of thousands of TB cases in India are being missed each year. According to the National Strategic Plan, “close to 0.54 million TB patients remain uncaptured by TB surveillance/notification and services, and are likely in private health delivery systems or the community”.

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