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Migrant Clinicians Network applauds the National Action Plan for Combating Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis, Calls for Funding

White HouseMigrant Clinicians Network (MCN) applauds the White House’s National Action Plan for Combating Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis, which, if implemented, provides a clear and effective path forward to eliminate TB. The National Action Plan, released at the end of December, identifies strategic actions that the US government can take within the next five years to effectively combat multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) and extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB). The National Action Plan aims to strengthen domestic and international capacity and collaboration, and to accelerate research and development related to MDR-TB,

“This is a great plan -- it’s something we’ve been asking for for a long time,” said Ed Zuroweste, MD, Chief Medical Officer of MCN. “But it has to be backed up by funding.” Currently, the National Action Plan does not identify funds for implementation.

“The mobile populations we serve through Health Network are at a higher risk for TB and encounter greater barriers to complete treatment,” Dr. Zuroweste noted. With funding, “this plan would go a long way in helping eliminate TB among this vulnerable population whose health needs have so often been ignored.”

Worldwide, TB causes roughly 4,000 deaths each day, and MDR-TB and XDR-TB, which are resistant to our widely available TB treatments, are on the rise. “Drug resistance is already at crisis levels internationally, and we anticipate that it’s only going to get worse in the US unless we really attack it with high-level, strongly collaborative approaches like those outlined in this plan, that are backed by sufficient funding,” Dr. Zuroweste concluded. 

Read the National Action Plan here and the White House’s fact sheet on the plan here.

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