It is our immense pleasure to disseminate the information about Nepal National Tuberculosis Programme (NTP) in the digital platform. The website of National Tuberculosis Programme is a stepping-stone to unearth new avenues of information to the partners, stakeholders and different actors.
Tuberculosis still remains one of the major public health problem in Nepal. The Ministry of Health and Population carried out Tuberculosis Prevalence Survey (TBPS) in 2018/19 and estimated 117,000 (416/100,000 population) prevalent cases and 69,000 (245/100,000) incidence TB cases annually, which is 1.8 and 1.6 times higher than previously estimated by the WHO. The estimated TB mortality was 17,000 per year, which is 3.1 times higher than previous estimation (5,500). The Drug Resistance TB (DRTB) is emerging as challenges to fight against TB and achieve the targets of the Sustainable Development Goal by 2030 and End TB by 2050. The survey also provided new estimation on DRTB cases (2,200 annually), which is 1.57 times higher than the previously estimated.
The number of DSTB cases notified around 28,000 in fiscal year 2020/21, which is only 41% of notification in estimated incident cases (69,000). Notification rate of new TB cases in Nepal differ substantially by geographic area. Similarly, the DRTB notification was 23% (509 out of estimated 2,200 cases) in 2020/21 and only 60% diagnosed cases enrolled in the treatment of 23% (509) of the notified cases.
Nepal NTP has faced several challenges like improving accountability, prioritization, engagement and investment for TB program at all level, enhancing the capacity of TB focal persons, strengthening meaningful participation of community and private sectors in TB diagnosis and treatment, expansion of newer technology and maximization of utilization for TB diagnosis, maximizing utilization of sputum collection and transportation approach, expanding laboratories for TB diagnosis and its appropriate management, institutionalization and expansion of web and case-based surveillance systems in public and private sectors and establish robust supervision system, increasing investment and effective implementation of TB infection control measures at all levels, implementing TB program through multisectorial approach, enrolling all diagnosed DRTB cases in the treatment and managing TB patients during COVID-19 pandemic.
To advance in position, NTP will secure political commitment, sustained resources and multisectoral engagement by establishing End TB committees under highest political leadership, securing sufficient resources for TB at all level, implementing TB free initiative, ensuring all people with TB have access to quality care through UHC. TB should be under Universal Health Coverage (UHC) package making TB mandatorily notifiable and scaling TB preventive treatment. Scale up community engagement to promote human rights, patient support and stand against stigma and discrimination. All TB patients and family members will be covered in health insurance package, social protection and poverty alleviation support schemes.
Nepal has made several achievements as TB is included in the basic health service package, DRTB patients covered by the national health insurance scheme, digitalized case-based surveillance, expanded WHO-recommended mWRD technology in 43 districts, established Culture/DST laboratories in GNETUP and NTCC at Kathmandu, linked sputum transportation service to TB diagnostic centers and need-based referral system initiated, started TB Preventive Therapy for under 5 years of children who have come in close contact with index TB patient, lunched FAST (Find Actively, Separating and Treating Effectively) approach to increase TB diagnosis among the service recipients at hospitals and prevent TB infection, started partnership with Nepal Pediatric Association, professional authorities and other stakeholders to increase case notification. Furthermore, increased HIV testing rate among the TB patients, developed guidelines for the establishment and operation of TB treatment and referral management centers at the provincial level and secured 90% treatment success rate of DSTB and 70% DRTB patients.
As, we are moving towards ending TB, I urge for united approach among government, partners, NGOs, private sectors and other stakeholders to “Unite to END TB”.
I welcome you all to provide invaluable feedback and suggestions to make this website beneficial to everyone concerned.