This section hosts guidelines, manuals and toolkits to strengthen public health practice.
Over the last 18 months, routine TB services were often disrupted by stringent lockdowns announced to control the COVID-19 pandemic. This review estimates the potential long-term epidemiological impact of such disruptions on TB in high-burden countries, and how this negative impact could be mitigated. Even temporary disruptions can cause long-term increases in TB incidence and mortality. This paper highlights that if lockdown-related disruptions cause a temporary 50% reduction in TB transmission, a 3-month suspension of TB services, followed by 10 months to restore to normal, would cause, over the next 5 years, an additional 1⋅19 million TB cases and 361,000 TB deaths in India alone. The principal driver of these adverse impacts is the accumulation of undetected TB during a lockdown. This paper demonstrates how long term increases in TB burden could be averted in the short term through supplementary “catch-up” TB case detection and treatment, once restrictions are eased. Lockdown-related disruptions can cause long-lasting increases in TB burden, but these negative effects can be mitigated with rapid restoration of TB services, and targeted interventions that are implemented as soon as restrictions are lifted. This is a useful document for policy makers. Click here to read the review.