On average, 500 patients are enrolled on treatment for multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) in Georgia each year. Approximately 10 per cent have the extensively resistant form of the disease.
Georgia has one of the highest rates of MDR-TB in the world. As part of the UNITAID-funded endTB partnership, MSF has been supporting the Ministry of Health since 2014 with the introduction of the two new TB drugs developed in recent years – bedaquiline and delamanid. Between July 2014 and December 2015, 146 patients were treated with bedaquiline and 11 with delamanid. At the end of 2015, MSF was leading the preparations for a clinical trial in Georgia aimed at identifying new, shorter and less toxic regimens for patients with MDR-TB, based on these two drugs.
MSF continued to support the Abkhazia national TB programme with the transportation of sputum samples from Gulripsh (Sokhum) TB hospital to Tbilisi referral TB laboratory. Results are sent back to the hospital on a weekly basis. In 2015, a total of 523 samples were processed. Despite handing over activities in 2014, MSF still financially supports AMRA, a local NGO that works with elderly and vulnerable people and provides support to MDR-TB patients to help them better adhere to their treatment.
No. staff in 2015: 27 | Expenditure: €1.3 million | Year MSF first worked in the country: 1993 | msf.org/georgia