A Project of
Indian Pharmaceutical Association (IPA)
In collaboration with
Commonwealth Pharmacists’ Association (CPA)
International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation (IPSF)
TB Fact Card Project in community pharmacies in Mumbai
Someone in the world is newly infected with TB bacilli every second; overall, one-third of the world’s population is currently infected. 500,000 people die each year in India ,the country with the greatest TB Burden. Among all infectious diseases it remains to be number one killer in adults. Tuberculosis actually is one of the completely curable diseases provided the right treatment is taken for the complete duration. Incomplete or wrong treatment leads to fatal complication, Multidrug Resistant (MDR) TB. There has been alarming increase in MDR TB Cases in our country. Tb is a also common co infection in HIV patients.
In spite of the free diagnosis & drug treatment at DOTS centres,50 to 60% of TB patients take their treatment from private physicians & hence these patients come in contact with the retail pharmacists for their medication purchase. The treatment of these patients is not under the observation & in many cases the patients leave the treatment halfway due to financial reasons or ignorance. Pharmacists, as most easily accessible members of the primary health care team, can play a more proactive role in preventing and managing TB for these patients whose treatment is out of purview of DOTS supervision. This valuable resource was rarely tapped for the TB Control. The Pharmacy students can certainly assist the pharmacists in this venture. Based on these views, a TB Fact Card project was designed & implemented.
- To promote the role of the pharmacist in the area of public health;
- To promote the role of the pharmacist as a community health educator;
- To promote the role of the pharmacists in the delivery of services at community level,
- To complement their role as medicine suppliers;
- To involve pharmacy students in the development and implementation of health interventions at community level.
The project activities involved:
- Dispensing of anti- TB medicines as per the prescription of physician
- Creating awareness about prevention & treatment of TB by way of verbal counselling & by providing written information in local language(TB Fact Card)
- Monitoring of treatment when patient comes back to Pharmacy for refill of medicines or by personal visits to the patients home(with patient consent) or by telephonic calls
- Counselling patients about importance of proper nutrition in TB ( with the guidance of the nutritionist)
- Maintaining patient records in easy to use formats. In these formats the contact details of patient can be entered along with the prescribed medicines & at each interaction body weight, any side effects can be noted down.
- Guiding the poor patients to nearby DOTS centre for free treatment
In this pilot project, the 60 selected pharmacists in Mumbai had taken up this proactive role & monitored the treatment of over 200 TB patient’s with the help of 50 students. The students took lead in meeting & informing the TB physicians nearby to the Project pharmacies & some of the Physicians recommended their patients to the project pharmacies for better treatment monitoring. This has set an example of Collaborative Care.
The TB Fact Cards are made in four different languages (English,Hindi,Marathi & Gujarathi) & they can be used by the others to spread awareness about TB in the community. The Cards can be reprinted with the prior permission to IPA Head Quarters. Also those State IPA’s who are interested in this project activity can contact the IPA HQ at firstname.lastname@example.org or at email@example.com.