Despite high rates of drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) in Uzbekistan, most people who have the disease are undiagnosed and go without medical care.
In Autonomous Republic of Karakalpakstan, Médecins Sans Frontières is helping address gaps in TB diagnosis and treatment, focusing on the provision of quality medical care for patients with DR-TB who do not respond to the standard first-line regimen of drugs that can cure drug-sensitive TB.
Médecins Sans Frontières is also introducing new approaches, such as using rapid diagnostic tests and treating people as outpatients so they do not always have to be hospitalised.
TB medication can have powerful side effects such as headaches and nausea, which can cause patients to interrupt or discontinue their regimens. Médecins Sans Frontières helps patients medically manage side effects and provides counselling to see them through treatment. The programme also supports patients with education, transportation, food packages and financial aid.
In 2012, Médecins Sans Frontières expanded its programme of comprehensive TB care to the districts of Kegeily and Nukus Town, while TB care in the districts of Takhtakupir and Karauzyak was handed over to the Ministry of Health in June.
Mèdecins Sans Frontiéres first worked in Uzbekistan in 1997
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