WHO, Armenia to work more closely to improve TB control

WHO, Armenia to work more closely to improve TB control

PanARMENIAN.Net - WHO/Europe will work more closely with Armenia in the coming biennium as the country moves to improve control of tuberculosis (TB) and achieve universal health coverage.

The decision to increase collaboration was one of the outcomes of a mission to Armenia on July 22–24, 2014 led by Dr Hans Kluge, Director of Health Systems and Public Health Services and Special Representative of the Regional Director to prevent and combat multidrug- and extensively drug-resistant (M/XDR) TB.

Dr Kluge presented the preliminary findings of a TB program review conducted by a team of international experts led by WHO/Europe. These included recommendations for structural changes and financing mechanisms to increase the effectiveness of the program, as well as achievements and positive changes in the program since the last review held 3 years ago, WHO/Europe said on its website

Among the latter were: substantial improvements in the effectiveness of treatment of MDR TB patients; revision of financing mechanisms to reduce hospitalization of patients; more focus on outpatient services and community care; merger of the management of the TB program and that of a republican TB hospital to improve overall management.

Health Minister Armen Muradyan requested support in mapping the health system and assessing current capacities and services. Dr Kluge suggested an assessment of public health capacities and services using a WHO web-based instrument as well as an assessment of the health system in relation to noncommunicable disease control and prevention. These assessments will support the Ministry in reorienting health care towards more accessible primary care services.

The mission also served as a follow up of the Minister’s recent visit to the Regional Office and an overall update on WHO commitments and planned technical support.

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