One out of 20 chil­dren with TB has drug-re­sis­tant in­fec­tion

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Aayushi Pratap aayu­ship­pratap@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Three char­i­ots of Lord Ja­gan­nath, Lord Bal­ab­hadra and Devi Sub­hadra be­ing read­ied to be pulled from Badadanda to Shree Ja­gan­nath Tem­ple in Puri on Wed­nes­day.

One in ev­ery 20 chil­dren, who were di­ag­nosed with tu­ber­cu­lo­sis (TB) at Mum­bai’s pri­vate hos­pi­tals be­tween Septem­ber 2014 and April 2016, had dru­gre­sis­tant forms of the in­fec­tion, re­vealed data by Pri­vate Provider In­ter­face Agency (PPIA), which op­er­ates un­der the su­per­vi­sion of the BMC. Un­der the PPIA ini­tia­tive, 1,826 pae­di­atric cases were re­ported by 116 doc­tors dur­ing the pe­riod.

PPIA was launched in Au­gust 2014, un­der the civic body’s Mum­bai Mis­sion for TB con­trol, to in­crease the no­ti­fi­ca­tions of TB cases from pri­vate hos­pi­tals. Around 50% of the city’s pop­u­la­tion seeks first-hand med­i­cal help at pri­vate hos­pi­tals.

“Two years ago, we did not have di­ag­nos­tic GeneXpert to anal­yse drug re­sis­tance in TB cases. But some doc­tors are us­ing GeneXperts lib­er­ally, which has given us this data,” said a PPAI of­fi­cial.

GeneXpert is a molec­u­lar test, which di­ag­noses TB by de­tect­ing the pres­ence of TB bac­te­ria, as well as tests the bac­terium DNA for drug re­sis­tance. While this is pre­lim­i­nary data, doc­tors said the num­ber of chil­dren with drug-re­sis­tant TB could be higher af­ter data from the gov­ern­ment-run hos­pi­tals is also taken into ac­count.

Dr Dak­sha Shah, BMC’s TB of­fi­cer, told HT it will take time to re­lease data on dru­gre­sis­tant cases in chil­dren. How­ever, an of­fi­cial from the state’s TB con­trol of­fice said 2,159 cases of chil­dren with TB were re­ported in Mum­bai in 2015. But the BMC is yet to study how many of these were drug re­sis­tant, the of­fi­cer said. “Un­til two months ago, we did not sep­a­rately cap­ture the por­tion of pae­di­atric dru­gre­sis­tant TB in our rou­tine re­port­ing mech­a­nism. Now that it has been in­sti­tuted, we will have more data about drug-re­sis­tant in­fec­tions in chil­dren,” the of­fi­cial added.

ARABINDA MAHAPATRA / HT PHOTO

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