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Reichman and Hershfield's Tuberculosis: A Comprehensive, International Approach

2006 Edition, August 1, 2006

Complete Document

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Active, Most Current

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ISBN: 978-0-8493-9271-9
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Product Details:

  • Revision: 2006 Edition, August 1, 2006
  • Published Date: August 1, 2006
  • Status: Active, Most Current
  • Document Language: English
  • Published By: CRC Press (CRC)
  • Page Count: 1320
  • ANSI Approved: No
  • DoD Adopted: No

Description / Abstract:


Tuberculosis, an ancient scourge of humanity known for several thousands of years, is still a major public health challenge in many countries today. Global targets for tuberculosis control by the year 2005 were set by the World Health Assembly to encourage a concerted worldwide effort to end this situation. It is therefore timely and appropriate for the international tuberculosis control and research community to assess what has been achieved in the past decade since the launch and promotion in 1995 of a modern tuberculosis control strategy, branded under the name of ‘‘DOTS''a. It is also time to consider what more needs to be done to eliminate tuberculosis as a significant disease threat.

Looking back, there have been remarkable achievements in recent years. They include: the rapid adoption of the DOTS strategy, which is now being applied in most countries; the high rate of cure demonstrated among millions of infectious tuberculosis patients throughout the world; the efforts to tackle multi-drug resistant tuberculosis and human immunodeficiency virus–associated tuberculosis; the launch of successful initiatives, such as the Global Drug Facility and the Green Light Committee, to provide access to anti-tuberculosis drugs in resource-poor countries; the inclusion of tuberculosis among the targeted diseases for support by new international financial mechanisms, which are mobilizing unprecedented resources; and major public–private research initiatives to develop new tools to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of tuberculosis. This is undoubtedly an impressive track record that has been widely supported and facilitated by the establishment in 2001 of the global coalition to fight tuberculosis: the Stop TB Partnership.

However, despite substantial progress in many countries, tuberculosis still kills 1.7 million people and affects 8.9 million new patients every year. Clearly, more detailed knowledge is necessary to strengthen research efforts toward development of new diagnostics, new anti-tuberculosis drugs, and an effective vaccine. Better understanding of pathogenesis, for instance, is crucial. At the same time, while awaiting the tools of the future, we cannot afford to relax our efforts to control tuberculosis using the current tools more effectively in the (often weak) health systems existing today in the world. On the contrary, the threat of resistance to anti-tuberculosis drugs, especially in the former USSR, and the overlap of the tuberculosis and human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency virus epidemics, especially in Africa, oblige us to reinforce DOTS programs everywhere by promoting public–private approaches and engaging communities to reach more patients, establish collaboration between tuberculosis and human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency virus programs, and contribute to health system strengthening to address, for instance, the scarcity of human resources capable of delivering high quality tuberculosis services. With this in mind, the new Stop TB Strategy recently announced by the World Health Organization was formulated to widen the focus of DOTS and address all modern challenges. All these issues, whether they are in the field of research or that of program implementation, deserve our full attention.

Therefore, in preparing the third edition of this widely respected book, I sought to link the clinical ‘‘state of the art'' to the principles of programmatic tuberculosis control and to current and upcoming research initiatives, thereby integrating on paper what needs to be integrated in practice through effective collaboration between research scientists, physicians, public health officials, epidemiologists, and policy makers. The book's 50 chapters bring together our current knowledge of tuberculosis, its control, and related scientific discoveries. It is addressed to all who work in the field of tuberculosis control, whether in low-income, high-prevalence areas or in low-prevalence industrialized countries. As a compendium of information on all aspects of tuberculosis, it enables up-to-date knowledge to reach all parts of the world, especially those settings where access to modern scientific ideas may still be difficult.

I am immensely grateful to Lee B. Reichman and Earl S. Hershfield for inviting me to continue the successful tradition of their book. Aspiring to match their previous standards, I have asked many of the world's leading authorities on tuberculosis to contribute chapters to this book and I thank them for their generous and expert collaboration. Finally, I thank my family for patiently tolerating my enthusiasm for this important endeavour to share knowledge on the global fight against tuberculosis.