The objective of this study was to ascertain the number and sequence of
providers visited by TB patients before availing treatment services from
DOTS; to describe the duration between onset of symptoms to treatment.
A cross sectional, qualitative study. Information was gathered through
in-depth interviews of TB patients registered during the month of Oct,
2012 for availing TB treatment under the Revised National TB Control
Programme from four tuberculosis diagnosis and treatment centers in
Out of the 114 patients who registered, 108 participated in the study.
The study showed that informal providers and retail chemists were the
first point of contact and source of clinical advice for two-third of
the patients, while the rest sought medical care from qualified
providers directly. Most patients sought medical care from more than two
providers, before being diagnosed as TB. Female TB patients and patients
with extra-pulmonary TB had long mean duration between onset of symptoms
to initiation of treatment (6.3 months and 8.4 months respectively).
The pathways followed by TB patients, illustrated in this study, provide
valuable lessons on the importance of different types of providers (both
formal and informal) in the health system in a society like India and
the delays in the diagnosis and treatment of tuberculosis.
Takarinda, KC.; Harries, AD.; Mutasa-Apollo, T.; Sandy, C.; Murimwa, T.; Mugurungi, O. How Did the TB Patients Reach DOTS Services in Delhi? A Study of Patient Treatment Seeking Behavior. PLoS ONE (2012) 7 (8) e42458. [DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0042458]
How did the TB patients reach DOTS services in Delhi? A study of patient treatment seeking behaviour.