A new study has revealed that the drug-resistant Tuberculosis cases in Mumbai grew by 36% in the past three years. This data was collected by the public health department of Bombay Municipal Corporation. In 2015, 3,608 multi-drug resistant (MDR) TB patients were identified in Mumbai, and by 2017 the number of MDR TB patients rose to 4,891.

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Also, according to the data, the severest form of TB also called the extensively drug-resistant (XDR) TB increased by 21% in the last three years. In 2015, 556 patients were diagnosed with XDR TB, and in 2017, 670 patients were identified to be suffering from XDR TB. BMC perfectly documented this increase in the number of Drug-resistant TB patients because of two factors, one is due to a better notification by both public and private sector doctors in Mumbai and second is due to the enhancement of diagnostic facilities to facilitate easy detection of TB cases.

The BMC datasheet revealed that there was almost 18 percent increase in the number of standard TB cases in the last three years. A civic doctor said that more private sector doctors are notified them, and that has led to the sudden increase in numbers. According to the state officials, Mumbai accounts for around 70% of Maharashtra’s MDR TB cases, and the city also has the highest default rate.

State TB officer Dr. Sanjeev Kamble said, “While there are many factors contributing to this, migration is perhaps one of the biggest. It is common for migrant laborers to take medicines for 2-3 months, then take a break and start again.” Kamble informed that the adherence issue is very large and is one of the main challenges they are trying to address through counselors and by building a better doctor-patient relationship. Although over a lakh fresh TB cases are identified every year, Dr. Kamble is of the notion that the goal of eliminating TB by 2025 is not an impossible one for Maharashtra.


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