A Cost–Benefit Approach
Chapter 29: Cost Minimization Practice: The Costs of Treating TB
It has been estimated that as many as one-third of the world’s population has a latent form of TB, although most do not have any symptoms of the disease – see UN Millennium Project (2005, p. 100). As we learned in Part II, people with HIV have a compromised immune system, which means that they are more susceptible to any disease including TB. So we should not be surprised that people with HIV are more likely to get TB. What we should be surprised with is the extent of this susceptibility. According to Ngamvithayapong (2007), people who are HIV positive are 100 times more likely to contract TB than those who are HIV negative. So TB is one of the main opportunistic infections that people with HIV can expect to get. In fact, in SSA, TB is the number one cause of death for those with HIV. Conversely, if one has TB, one is also very likely to be infected with HIV. So the WHO and UNAIDS recommend that everyone with TB living in a country with a more than a 1 percent HIV prevalence rate should be given counseling and testing for HIV. As TB and HIV are so intertwined in SSA, that is, there is a dual TB/HIV epidemic, one can class TB treatments as HIV interventions. The TB intervention evaluation that we will be examining is by Sinanovic and Kumaranayake (2006) that relates to South Africa. TB TREATMENT IN SOUTH AFRICA In line with much of SSA, TB...
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