Policy & Issues

Podcast: In India, young children with MDR-TB disease are worst hit

Diagnosing MDR-TB is difficult in young children as they very often do not produce sputum and even if a sample is obtained, it contains very few TB bacili. Hence it is difficult to confirm the diagnosis bacteriologically even by culture. But India's drug-resistant TB programme requires a confirmed bacteriological report from an RNTCP-accredited lab. Unless patients go with that report, they will not be started on MDR-TB regimen, says Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, Director of National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis, Chennai, India.