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Ann Am Thorac Soc. 2014 Mar;11(3):277-85. doi: 10.1513/AnnalsATS.201401-004AR.

Updating the International Standards for Tuberculosis Care. Entering the era of molecular diagnostics.

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1 Curry International Tuberculosis Center, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California; and.


The International Standards for Tuberculosis Care, first published in 2006 (Lancet Infect Dis 2006;6:710-725.) with a second edition in 2009 ( ), was produced by an international coalition of organizations funded by the United States Agency for International Development. Development of the document was led jointly by the World Health Organization and the American Thoracic Society, with the aim of promoting engagement of all care providers, especially those in the private sector in low- and middle-income countries, in delivering high-quality services for tuberculosis. In keeping with World Health Organization recommendations regarding rapid molecular testing, as well as other pertinent new recommendations, the third edition of the Standards has been developed. After decades of dormancy, the technology available for tuberculosis care and control is now rapidly evolving. In particular, rapid molecular testing, using devices with excellent performance characteristics for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis and rifampin resistance, and that are practical and affordable for use in decentralized facilities in low-resource settings, is being widely deployed globally. Used appropriately, both within tuberculosis control programs and in private laboratories, these devices have the potential to revolutionize tuberculosis care and control, providing a confirmed diagnosis and a determination of rifampin resistance within a few hours, enabling appropriate treatment to be initiated promptly. Major changes have been made in the standards for diagnosis. Additional important changes include: emphasis on the recognition of groups at increased risk of tuberculosis; updating the standard on antiretroviral treatment in persons with tuberculosis and human immunodeficiency virus infection; and revising the standard on treating multiple drug-resistant tuberculosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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