EATG » Prioritising children and adolescents in the TB response of the WHO European Region

Prioritising children and adolescents in the TB response of the WHO European Region

Abstract

In 2017, in recognition of the challenges faced by Member States in managing childhood and adolescent tuberculosis (TB) at a country level, the WHO Regional Office for Europe held a Regional Consultation. In total, 35 countries participated in the consultations representing both high- and low-incidence Member States. Here, we provide an overview of the existing World Health Organization (WHO) documents and guidelines on childhood and adolescent TB and describe the outcomes of this regional meeting. National childhood and adolescent TB guidelines are available in 25% of Member States, while 33% reported that no such guidelines are at hand. In the majority of countries (83%), childhood and adolescent TB is part of the National Strategic Plan. The most pressing challenges in managing paediatric TB comprise the lack of adequate drug formulations, the difficult diagnosis, and treatment of presumed latent TB infection. Investments into childhood and adolescent TB need to be further advocated to achieve the End TB goals set by WHO to eliminate TB by 2030.

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