How we’re helping in Belarus

Leonid, a 53-year-old with drug-resistant tuberculosis, in the intensive care unit of the TB institute in Minsk.
Belarus 2018 © Viviane Dalles
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Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) supports the Belarusian Ministry of Health to treat patients with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB).

Belarus is listed as a high-burden country for MDR-TB in the World Health Organization’s 2018 Global Tuberculosis Report

In 2018, we supported the Ministry of Health in three TB facilities: in Minsk, in City TB hospital in Volkovichi, Minsk region, and in Orsha, where we had a team providing drug-resistant TB (DR-TB) treatment for 22 inmates of a penal colony, six of whom were co-infected with hepatitis C and were given new drugs that have a 95 percent cure rate.

The focus of our program in Minsk is on supporting adherence to treatment for patients with alcohol use problems and marginalized groups. Using a patient-centered approach, our multidisciplinary team provided psychosocial assistance to support adherence to the entire course of treatment, conducting 2,225 consultations in 2018.


MSF projects in Belarus

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By the end of the year, 59 patients with DR-TB were on treatment with new regimens containing bedaquiline and/or delamanid as part of the endTB observational study. With 41 new patients enrolled in 2018, the project reached the national target of 122 patients recruited since August 2015.

In 2018, we also started recruiting Belarusian patients for the TB PRACTECAL trial, which explores short, innovative MDR-TB treatment regimens. A total of 22 patients had been admitted by the end of the year.