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Pakistan Anti TB Association

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Health Complex,
16-K, Gulberg III,
Lahore, Pakistan.

The Global Fund The Union (IUATLD) National TB Control Program (NTP) STOP TB Partnership

National TB Control Program - Pakistan

Pakistan became a sovereign state in 1947 and its present projected population is estimated at 151 million, spreads over an area of 852392 sq km. The population growth rate is 2.5 % life expectancy is about 63 yrs and the average literacy rate is 50 %. Per capita income is US $ 492. Health expenditure (public sector) is 0.08 % while total health sector investment is 3.9 % of GDP.

Administratively Pakistan comprises of four provinces besides some Federally Administered Areas and the state of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. The country has a mixed society, which is predominantly Muslims. Urdu is the National language while multiple regional languages are spoken in the country; however, English is used for most official purposes. Each province/area is divided into districts, which are the basic administrative units.

WHO declared TB a global emergency in 1993. Since then efforts have been made to expand partnerships and bring all stakeholders on board in order to control this disease more effectively. The economic conditions correlate with new cases of TB. The highest incidence is seen in those countries of Africa, Asia, and Latin America with the lowest gross national products. WHO estimates that eight million people are infected with TB every year, out of those 95% live in developing countries. An estimated 3 million people die due to TB every year.

TB has been prevalent in Pakistan and unfortunately it has been one of the neglected health areas in the past. Pakistan ranks 6th amongst the countries with a highest burden of TB in the world. Pakistan contributes about 44% of tuberculosis burden in the Eastern Mediterranean Region. According to WHO, the incidence of sputum positive TB cases in Pakistan is 80/100,000 per year and for all types it is 177/100,000.TB is responsible for 5.1 percent of the total national disease burden in Pakistan. The impact of TB on socio economic status is substantial.

Government of Pakistan endorsed the DOTS strategy, following WHO’s declaration of TB as a global emergency in 1993, The National TB Control Programme (NTP) Pakistan adopted DOTS (Directly Observed Treatment, Short course) strategy in 1995. The national guidelines were developed and few pilot projects were also started. However, the program became dormant due to abolition of the Federal Directorate for Tuberculosis Control in 1996. therefore the progress during the first three years (i.e. 1995 – 1998) remained slow, because of its vertical approach, lack of consensus between federal and provincial units, and non-availability of funds from regular health budget. In 1998 the roles and relationship between the federal and provincial tuberculosis control program were re-defined and agreed.

For further details please visit website of NTP http://www.ntp.gov.pk