In Practice

What did we learn from South Africa’s first-ever tuberculosis prevalence survey?

Y Pillay, L Mvusi, L D Mametja, S Dlamini


The World Health Organization (WHO) has urged countries to conduct tuberculosis (TB) prevalence surveys to better understand the burden of TB and to enable the WHO to conduct global estimates. Until the report from the first-ever prevalence survey in South Africa (SA), the country had to rely on WHO estimates. The recently published report on the SA TB prevalence survey provides important estimates of the burden of TB disease as well as information on health-seeking behaviour. This review notes the key findings of the 2018 prevalence survey. The high prevalence of TB in SA continues to be a major cause for concern, and calls for a significantly improved response to reach the End TB targets set by the WHO.

Authors' affiliations

Y Pillay, Clinton Health Access Initiative, Pretoria, South Africa

L Mvusi, National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

L D Mametja, Health Professions Council of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa

S Dlamini, National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

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Tuberculosis; Prevalence; South Africa

Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2021;111(5):402-404. DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.2021.v111i5.15662

Article History

Date submitted: 2021-04-06
Date published: 2021-04-06

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