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Free Content Care during the intensive phase: promotion of adherence [Educational Series: Best Practice. Serialised Guide. Best practice for the care of patients with tuberculosis. Number 4 in the series]

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The standards in this chapter focus on maximising the patient's ability to adhere to the treatment prescribed. Many people are extremely shocked when they are told they have TB, some refuse to accept it and others are relieved to find out what is wrong and that treatment is available. The reaction depends on many factors, including cultural beliefs and values, previous experience and knowledge of the disease. Even though TB is more common among vulnerable groups, it can affect anyone and it is important for patients to be able to discuss their concerns in relation to their own individual context. The cure for TB relies on the patient receiving a full, uninterrupted course of treatment, which can only be achieved if the patient and the health service work together. A system needs to be in place to trace patients who miss their appointments for treatment (late patients). The best success will be achieved through the use of flexible, innovative and individualised approaches. The treatment and care the patient has received will inevitably have an impact on his or her willingness to attend in the future. A well-defined system of late patient tracing is mandatory in all situations. However, when the rates are high (above 10%), any tracing system will be useless without also examining the service as a whole.
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Keywords: adherence; best practice; care; health care worker; treatment

Document Type: Invited Paper

Affiliations: 1: International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, Paris, France; International Council of Nurses, Geneva, Switzerland 2: International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, Paris, France 3: Ministry of Public Health, Bangkok, Thailand 4: Ministry of Health, Kampala, Uganda 5: KNCV, The Hague, The Netherlands 6: State Agency of Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases, Riga, Latvia 7: São Paulo University, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Publication date: 2008-06-01

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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