KNCV’s TB Expert is appointed Vice-Chair of the WHO TB Public-Private Mix Core Group

“Together, we aim to drive forward innovative strategies and strengthen our global efforts to end TB.” – Dr. Vijayashree Yellappa

Last week, the Annual Meeting of the World Health Organization (WHO) TB Public-Private Mix (PPM) Working Group was held in Dhaka, Bangladesh, where KNCV’s Senior TB Expert, Dr. Vijayashree Yellapa, was appointed as Vice-Chair of the WHO TB-PPM Core Group.

The TB-PPM Working Group is regularly supporting countries, to enhance collaboration between National Tuberculosis Programs (NTPs) and diverse public, voluntary, corporate and private healthcare providers for tuberculosis (TB) care in different settings. The private sector is often the first point of contact for many individuals seeking healthcare, making their involvement crucial in timely TB diagnosis and care. By fostering these partnerships, TB care gaps can be filled by leveraging all existing care networks and resources. This not only helps in identifying, treating and supporting more people with TB but also in the monitoring and prevention efforts by the NTPs towards the goal of ending TB by 2030.

Dr. Yellappa joined the KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation family in 2023, and she has supported us in incorporating the private sector into planning and decision-making processes to ensure a more comprehensive approach to TB care. With Dr. Yellappa’s work on TB-PPM approach, we are focusing on more inclusive and effective healthcare systems that leave no one behind.

Dr. Yellappa reflects on her appointment as Vice-Chair of the WHO TB-PPM Core Group:

“I am honoured to be appointed as the Vice Chair of the WHO TB-PPM Core Group at the annual TB PPM Working Group meeting, held in Dhaka 23rd-27th June 2024. I will be working alongside of Chair of the core group, Dr Mohammed Yassin, Senior advisor, Tuberculosis, Global Fund.

The exceptional leadership of outgoing Chair -Prof Madhukar Pai, Associate Director, McGill International TB Center, and Vice Chairs -William Wells, Senior Technical TB Advisor USAID, and Dr. S.S. Lal, Director, ReAct Asia Pacific has been instrumental in setting the agenda in alignment with Stop TB Partnership and Global TB Programme. Their invaluable contributions have significantly advanced PPM collective mission, setting a solid foundation for future initiatives.

The WHO TB PPM Core Group plays a crucial role in guiding and steering the operations of the PPM Working Group, which aims to scale up PPM efforts in TB elimination. This diverse group is composed of experts from 13 countries from various disciplines from high TB burden countries, PPM implementers, technical partners, academic institutions, funding agencies, and civil society. Members of the Core Group are appointed through a rigorous process of nomination, selection, and election conducted by the current leadership and secretariat, serving two-year terms with the possibility of renewal for an additional two years. The PPM Core Group’s responsibilities include overseeing the Working Group’s activities, advising the secretariat on developing strategic frameworks and work plans, and actively contributing to the implementation of PPM strategic priorities for 2024-2025 from their respective constituencies to enhance the implementation of these priorities.

Special thanks go to Hannah Monica Yesudian Dias, Tereza Kasaeva, and the Global TB Programme for their instrumental role in forming TB PPM working group, for another term.

I look forward to supporting the WHO TB PPM Secretariat from KNCV and collaborating closely with the Chair of the group, Dr. Mohammed Yassin. Together, we aim to drive forward innovative strategies and strengthen our global efforts to end TB. This selection is a testament to KNCV’s collaborative efforts and commitment to ending TB through public-private partnerships.”

KNCV has been fighting TB since its establishment in 1903. Over the past 120 years, the organization has acquired indispensable knowledge and experience in the field of effective TB prevention and care, resulting in pre-elimination in the Netherlands and significant contributions to global evidence generation, policy development and TB program implementation worldwide.

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