he Lancet Infectious Diseases, Early Online Publication, 7 March 2012
doi:10.1016/S1473-3099(12)70034-8Cite or Link Using DOI

Operational research and MDG tuberculosis control targets

Alimuddin Zumla a, Frank Cobelens bEmail Address

Tuberculosis continues to be a global emergency. In 2010, there were 8·8 million incident cases and 1·45 million deaths from tuberculosis, of which 0·35 million deaths were due to HIV-associated tuberculosis.1 The Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target to stop the spread of tuberculosis and reduce mortality by 50% by 2015 seems to be on track for all global regions, but is remote for sub-Saharan Africa. While new drugs and vaccines are in development, the answer to achieving the MDG aim universally, and particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, rests on programmatic and operational issues. The failure to deliver tuberculosis care through optimum use of currently available diagnostics and drugs now calls for a concerted action by donors and governments to commission operational research to provide an evidence base for enhancement of the use, quality, effectiveness, and coverage of tuberculosis interventions.2 This notion is especially important in low-income and middle-income countries where choices have to be made about allocation and strategic investment of scarce resources.2

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