MSH Country Teams Introducing a New Fixed-Dose Combination for Treating Childhood TB

{Photo Credit: MSH Staff}Photo Credit: MSH Staff

Management Sciences for Health has been working closely in collaboration with the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance) on the introduction of the new dispersible pediatric fixed-dose combination. Through MSH’s projects across identified high-burden countries, we have been providing assistance on updating treatment guidelines and essential medicines lists, registration of the reformulated product, financing and reprogramming grants, quantification, and training healthcare providers on the medicine and its use. 

MSH is currently working with the following countries to safely and efficiently introduce the new Fixed-Dose Combinations: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Myanmar, Nigeria, Philippines, Tanzania, and Uganda. Each country team is assisting the National TB Program during different phases of the introductory process. All country national TB program managers and ministries of health have expressed interest in the new pediatric fixed dose combinations, and want to begin planning on its use at different levels of the health systems. 

In Uganda, a switch plan for phasing out the old product and phasing in the new product has been presented to the National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Programme and approved. In the Philippines and Bangladesh, training programs are being developed in order to ensure healthcare providers are aware of the changes and the easy-to-use dispersible child-friendly tablets. In Nigeria, our country team staff is working closely with the National TB Program on quantification exercises to forecast the appropriate amount needed. The MSH team in Ethiopia is working alongside the World Health Organization in-country to develop and implement a feasible transition plan for the next few years. Planning and effectively managing the process of making this reformulated product available will ease the use and adherence for children affected by TB. 

MSH will be facilitating workshops in Marrakesh, Morocco in April alongside TB Alliance, WHO, and the Global Drug Facility on the steps related to adoption, introduction, and transition for the new product. MSH country staff will also be presenting on their countries’ progress, challenges, and current successes.  It will be an opportunity for South-to-South discussions, and rich conversations around the different options for product introduction.