Study on pulmonary tuberculosis reveals need for expansion of health services to high risk groups

The results of the first pulmonary infectious form of tuberculosis (TB) prevalence study made in Mongolia from 2013-2015 were introduced today to the health sector managers. The study conducted among 50300 urban and rural residents across 15 aimags and 8 districts of Ulaanbaatar, revealed that prevalence of pulmonary smear positive TB (cases with TB bacilli detected with sputum smear microscopy) is three times higher than the annual rate of notified TB. The researchers noted that these results indicate that TB has been intensively spreading among Mongolia’s population and demands revision of the currently existing TB prevention and control policies and strategies. The researchers also highlighted an immediate and profound need for an expansion of health services directed at high risk groups. The study revealed that about half of TB suspected persons those who have been coughing for over 2 weeks, have not sought a doctor’s help. Most of those people are urban residents from 25-44 of age. The study was jointly conducted by the Ministry of Health with technical and financial support from WHO and the Global Fund.