Although Europe identified the pathway to tuberculosis (TB) elimination in 1990, no information on programmes for country preparedness is available. A questionnaire investigating TB elimination activities was submitted to 38 national TB programme representatives of low TB incidence (<20 cases per 100 000 population) European countries/territories of the World Health Organization European region. Out of 31 providing a complete answer, 17 (54.8%) reported to have a dedicated national TB programme, 20 (64.5%) a national plan including TB elimination (13 (41.9%) including targets), 22 (71%) guidelines, 14 (45.2%) a specific budget for TB activities, and 23 (74.2%) TB reference centres. All countries reported having case-based electronic TB surveillance, 19 (61.3%) perform regular supervision, 12 (38.7%) have a monitoring and evaluation plan and five (16.1%) perform modelling. In three countries (9.7%), TB health services are free for insured individuals only. In 22 countries/territories (71%) not all TB drugs were available, while in 12 (38.7%) drug stock-outs have been described. Although high-risk group screening for latent TB infection is performed by the majority of countries, only 6 (19.4%) provided figures on preventive treatment completion rates. Not all elements identified as essential for country preparedness to achieve TB elimination are available in the countries surveyed.
|Number of pages||11|
|Journal||European Respiratory Journal|
|Publication status||Published - 1 May 2014|