TB/HIV Co-infection

TB and HIV unfortunately go hand in hand: people living with HIV (PLWHIV) run a much higher risk of developing active TB and TB is the main cause of death in PLWHIV. Of the globally 36.7 million PLWHIV, approximately 47% do not have access to treatment, and 30% do not know their status.

Improved cooperation between HIV and TB prevention programs is one of the areas where there is a lot to be gained. KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation, the international expertise center aimed at combating TB, has been working hard to achieve this for more than 15 years.

“Our projects have shown that effective cooperation enables us to identify more people with TB and HIV, treat them more effectively and also help take the pressure off healthcare systems. We need to make this the norm across the world. In order to achieve this, we are uniting all the main players. It’s time for donors, the world of politics and experts to embrace this TB/HIV cooperation and take concrete steps …”, said Kitty van Weezenbeek recently in the lead-up to the event TB/HIV, ‘Leave No One Behind: Scaling up integrated people-centered TB/HIV care towards universal health coverage.’ KNCV organized the event attended by TB and HIV experts, politicians and donors at the UN headquarters in New York, prior to the United Nations General Assembly meeting devoted to tuberculosis on Wednesday 26 September 2018 devoted to tuberculosis.

Building Models for the Future

One of these projects is ‘Improving TB/HIV care: Building models for the future’ of which KNCV is the lead partner. To provide greater strength to our interventions, we partnered with three Dutch NGO’s with complimentary skills and expertise: AFEW International, Hivos and PharmAccess. The financing is provided by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) as part of their Global Fund support.

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Another project is the UNITAID-funded IMPAACT4TB which enables the use of a shorter preventive therapy regimen and helps reduce the chance of getting ill with TB for the most vulnerable people, such as children under five and people living with HIV.

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The TREATS project (Tuberculosis Reduction through Expanded Anti-retroviral Treatment and Screening) was developed in response to TB and HIV Co-infection. TREATS has been set up by a consortium of organizations that is already running the largest ever trial of a combination HIV prevention strategy.

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