Author(s): Hussain A, Mirza Z, Qureshi FA, Hafeez A
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: In Pakistan, over 80\% of the patients suffering from TB consult a private practitioner for the initial evaluation. A cross-sectional survey was conducted in seven thickly populated urban communities of Rawalpindi district to evaluate the adherence of private practitioners with TB treatment guidelines as laid down by National Tuberculosis Control Programme (NTP) in Pakistan. The data was collected over 30 days. METHODS: A young lean man was simulated to act as a TB patient and was provided with a chest X-ray suggestive of TB and two Acid-Fast Bacilli (AFB) positive sputum reports. Only those prescriptions were included for analysis which either had recognized the patient having TB or had any TB drug written in the prescription. RESULTS: A total of 77 practitioners were visited. Prescriptions of 53 general practitioners fulfilled the inclusion criteria and were analyzed. Only 2 (3.7\%) prescriptions out of 53 met the required standard for TB patients as laid down by NTP. Eighty three percent (n = 44) favored a combination drug for the treatment while the rest preferred individual preparations. CONCLUSIONS: The study reflects the lack of knowledge about standardized TB treatment protocols amongst the private practitioners in Pakistan. Public Private Partnerships between government public health departments and non-governmental organizations working in public health can be a valuable tool in generating mass awareness campaigns.
This article was published in J Pak Med Assoc
and referenced in Medical Safety & Global Health