TB in Perspective: Is the Indian Design Futuristic?



The Indian design is hardly futuristic; it has not been appropriately adapted to the booming economy and fast growing capacity of India.

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Is the design suitably adapted to the booming economy, status or capacity of India? :

India has maximum TB cases as well as experts. Her TB institutes (TRC and NTI) have led the world with pioneer path breaking research. Onus of R&D on TB too is largely on India (and China) since the affluent West is uninterested and lukewarm towards TB and poverty-stricken African and other high burden nations lack the resources.

Alas, RNTCP is not futuristic; the package has not been magnanimously adapted to the emerging status and fast-growing capacity of India.

It is not commensurate with India’s fast growing economy – 8% annual growth for 3 consecutive years on the trot. Such old-fashioned diagnostic methodology executed by non-experts may be acceptable in an extremely poor banana republic that is completely devoid of X-ray infrastructure or doctors but not in India. It lags way behind the contemporary best. Failure to suitably upgrade Indian program is likely to hurt patients across the entire third world that willingly emulates Indian example and experience.

Little consensus within the medical fraternity:

Government files and records being completely out of reach, from whatever information the litigant could gather including replies to specific questions filed under ‘The Right to Information Act’, one is forced to painfully construe that a colossal program worth millions of dollars involving landmark deviation from the past was conceived, funded, chiseled and clinched between 1992 and 1997 by a handful of government officials unilaterally – without an exhaustive nation-wide debate befitting a change of such magnitude and without garnering even a semblance of consensus amongst the Indian medical fraternity! In a democracy, such abject lack of communication between the state, professionals and the citizens while deciding the fate of ailing millions is ironic