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Resource implications of patients with multidrug resistant tuberculosis

Abstract

BACKGROUND Multidrug resistant tuberculosis (MDR TB) requires a complex drug regimen and lengthy multidisciplinary care. The financial cost of successful management of each case is potentially large.

METHODS The costs of managing nine HIV negative patients with pulmonary MDR TB were compared with 18 age group and ethnicity matched controls with fully sensitive disease. Calculations included: cost of outpatient visits and inpatient stays including negative pressure isolation; costs of drug provision and toxicity monitoring; costs of additional procedures and multidisciplinary referrals.

RESULTS The mean cost of managing a case of pulmonary MDR TB was in excess of £60 000 and for sensitive disease it was £6040.

CONCLUSIONS Clinicians and healthcare commissioning authorities may both be underestimating the costs of managing MDR TB, and accordingly the consequences for units dealing with such cases may be serious. Funding of care for MDR TB in the UK requires strategic decisions at regional or governmental level.

  • tuberculosis
  • multidrug resistance
  • healthcare resources

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