On June 22-23, 2019, the Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery–Dubai hosted a two-day workshop titled, “Preventing TB to End TB.” Convening 73 individuals, this workshop heralded a new chapter in the global response to tuberculosis by bringing together country representatives from Middle Eastern countries to discuss how to comprehensively test and treat TB infection to achieve TB infection to achieve TB elimination.
Over two days, regional and international experts came together to identify and address the challenges and best practices that need to be adapted by Gulf countries in order to achieve TB elimination. There was also a special focus on migrants.
The meeting opened with a welcome from the Oman Ministry of Health, followed by an overview of the meeting by Dr. Salmaan Keshavjee, Director of the Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery–Dubai and Dr. Suvanand Sahu, Deputy Director of the StopTB Partnership. Dr. Sahu reiterated the preventive therapy commitments made at this year’s United Nations High Level Meeting on Tuberculosis and emphasized the action needed globally to translate the commitments into action.
Dr. Sourya Shrestha from Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Christine Ho from the United States Center for Disease Control, and Dr. Amera Khan from the StopTB Partnership reviewed examples of targeted testing and treatment from the United States. A panel of experts from GCC countries then gathered to discuss the scale-up progress for a TB prevention testing and treatment system. The last half of the day one program was comprised of case studies from New York City, Korea, and the United Kingdom.
Day twp started with a recap of the migrant screening policy in Oman. Local experts then presented on a number of topics including: the UAE TB control strategy; Latent TB and its effect on the incidence of active TB; and stopping the spread of TB in families.
The day closed with a panel of representatives from Oman, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Iraq, and Jordan discussing TB elimination in the Middle East.
Number of Participants: 73
Number of Countries: 17
Countries Represented: Bangladesh, France, Germany, Iraq, Jordan, Korea, Lebanon, Nepal, Netherlands, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America