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National approaches to TB care in adolescents

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BACKGROUND: Adolescents bear a large burden of TB but high-prevalence countries differ significantly in their approach to address the specific needs of adolescent patients. We explore the national approaches to TB care in adolescents and compare them to the recommendations of the WHO.

METHODS: We conducted a scoping review to describe the country-level guidelines to TB care in adolescents in high-burden countries. These guidelines were obtained through open sources. Information on TB care in adolescents were extracted from guidelines and compared to WHO recommendations.

RESULTS: We found a lack of consensus in defining adolescents and that many national guidelines do not address the special healthcare needs of adolescents nor align with the WHO recommendations. Recently updated country guidelines are more likely to recommend short-course regimens for TB preventive treatment and countries with a higher level of income were more likely to follow WHO guidance for microbiological confirmation of TB disease in adolescents.

CONCLUSION: A clear understanding of the burden of TB in adolescents that is reflected in disaggregated data reported at the country level is imperative in order to address the specific challenges to care in this high-risk group

Keywords: adolescents; prevention; tuberculosis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health, Department of Medicine, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA

Publication date: February 1, 2022

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IJTLD) is for clinical research and epidemiological studies on lung health, including articles on TB, TB-HIV and respiratory diseases such as COVID-19, asthma, COPD, child lung health and the hazards of tobacco and air pollution. Individuals and institutes can subscribe to the IJTLD online or in print – simply email us at [email protected] for details.

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