Technical Step Process to Switch to New Paediatric Tuberculosis Formulations - Technical Briefing Note, February 2016
(2016; 25 pages) [French]

Abstract

Tuberculosis (TB) is a major cause of illness and death among children. Each year, at least 1 million children get TB and another 140,000 die—that’s nearly 400 children that needlessly die each and every day from the disease.

For too long, there were no appropriately dosed TB medicines for children. The World Health Organization (WHO) revised their guidelines for childhood drug-sensitive TB treatment in 2010, recognizing that children are not just little adults—they need higher doses of the medicines relative to their body weight than an adult would need. Companies, however, did not produce any products conforming to the new guidelines, lacking incentives and reliable market information.

Since then, health providers and care givers around the world have had to improvise treatments for children with TB. To achieve a correct dose, they have to split or crush a number of bitter-tasting pills that children must then swallow or if paediatric FDCs exists to estimate correct doses by using combinations of it. This makes the six-month treatment for TB even more difficult and results in a guessing game of whether children receive the correct dose of medicines. Ultimately, this can make TB treatment ineffective and increase rates of drug resistant TB in children.

Over the past three years, TB Alliance and WHO have worked to bring quality-assured, affordable, child-friendly TB medicines in the correct internationally-recommended dosages to market. The purpose of this document is to support TB program managers, treatment centres and facilities, procurement and supply chain specialists as well as technical assistance providers to plan and implement a transition to new paediatric dose forms.

 
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