The ENGAGE-TB Approach: Integrating community-based TB activities into the work of NGOs and other CSOs
Tuberculosis (TB) affected an estimated 8.7 million people and caused 1.4 million deaths globally in 2011, including 0.5 million women and at least 64 000 children. One third of people estimated to have TB are either not reached for diagnosis and treatment by the current health systems or are not being reported. Even in patients who are identified, TB is often diagnosed and treated late. In order to reach the unreached and to find TB patients early in the course of their illness, a wider range of stakeholders already involved in community-based activities needs to be engaged. These include the nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and other civil society organizations (CSOs) that are active in community-based development, particularly in primary health care, HIV infection and maternal and child health, but have not yet included TB in their priorities and activities. The World Health Organization has just launched the new ENGAGE-TB Approach to facilitate the engagement of NGOs and other CSOs in community-based TB activities.