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Lancet. 2015 Dec 5;386(10010):2324-33. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(15)00321-9. Epub 2015 Oct 26.

Data for action: collection and use of local data to end tuberculosis.

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DST/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical Tuberculosis Research, and South African Medical Research Council Centre for Molecular and Cellular Biology, Division of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, Tygerberg, South Africa; Lung Infection and Immunity Unit, Department of Medicine, University of Cape Town, Observatory, Cape Town, South Africa.
Department of Global Health Equity, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.
KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation, The Hague, Netherlands; Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
University College London, London, UK.
Interactive Research & Development, Karachi, Pakistan.
Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, CT, USA.
Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA. Electronic address:


Accelerating progress in the fight against tuberculosis will require a drastic shift from a strategy focused on control to one focused on elimination. Successful disease elimination campaigns are characterised by locally tailored responses that are informed by appropriate data. To develop such a response to tuberculosis, we suggest a three-step process that includes improved collection and use of existing programmatic data, collection of additional data (eg, geographic information, drug resistance, and risk factors) to inform tailored responses, and targeted collection of novel data (eg, sequencing data, targeted surveys, and contact investigations) to improve understanding of tuberculosis transmission dynamics. Development of a locally targeted response for tuberculosis will require substantial investment to reconfigure existing systems, coupled with additional empirical data to evaluate the effectiveness of specific approaches. Without adoption of an elimination strategy that uses local data to target hotspots of transmission, ambitious targets to end tuberculosis will almost certainly remain unmet.

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