The World Health Organisation (WHO) proposes to end tuberculosis by 2035. Is this feasible or an impossible dream? To answer this question, Anna Vassall and co-authors review mathematical models and intervention scenarios in two papers in the Lancet Global Health.
What would it take to reduce TB incidence by 50% and mortality by 75% by 2025 in China, India and South Africa? Applying intervention scenarios in nine models, the authors conclude that expansion of TB services:
- seems cost-effective for high-burden countries
- could generate substantial health and economic benefits for patients
- would require substantial new funding
Eleven independently developed mathematical models of TB transmission projected the epidemiological impact of currently available TB interventions for prevention, diagnosis and treatment in China, India and South Africa. The results indicate that major reductions in tuberculosis burden seem possible with current interventions. However, additional interventions, adapted to country-specific TB epidemiology and health systems, are needed to reach the post-2015 End TB Strategy targets at country level.
In the related Comment, Olivia Oxlade and Dick Menzies conclude that:
perhaps the goal of ending tuberculosis is not such an impossible dream