As the TB Alliance looks forward, expanding our partnerships is a critical step in preparing for the launch of new TB drugs. The TB Alliance is engaged in many efforts to coordinate and leverage the expertise, experiences, and capabilities of various partners to ensure access to our products will be achieved rapidly, broadly, and efficiently.
Information about the global public and private TB market is at best patchy and inconsistent; it is difficult to put together a picture of the whole market to understand how to improve access to drugs. For this reason, the TB Alliance has partnered with several organizations to help complete the understanding of that market landscape.
We have worked with IMS Health to understand the TB market including our Pathway to Patients study in 2007 and our research on the private sector in 2010-2011. With their considerable presence in high TB burden countries, Management Sciences for Health conducted the extensive interviews for the country introduction study [.pdf - 262kb]. The Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine is now working with us to conduct patient studies in Bangladesh and Tanzania and Treatment Action Group has helped us keep in touch with patients who have TB.
Many high burden TB countries are relatively new markets for pharmaceutical companies. From the start, we have worked with our pharmaceutical industry partners to understand the TB marketplace and we will look to them to manufacture and distribute many of our products. In addition, we are expanding our pharmaceutical industry partnerships to include other members of CPTR. The Global Drug Facility, which procures and distributes first and second line TB medicines for many countries, is an important collaborator for us as we look ahead to procurement and distribution of new regimens.
Perhaps most importantly, we are working with countries to familiarize them with the TB drug development pipeline and help them prepare for policy consideration and introduction. As part of this effort, we are working with the WHO's STOP TB Department to understand the pathway to consideration of new TB regimens and their inclusion in the recommended TB treatment guidelines, which many countries look to for guidance on treatment regimens.
The private sector is an important and under-recognized part of the TB treatment delivery system in many countries. We work with the STOP TB Partnership's DOTS Expansion Working Group particularly in the areas of Public-Private Mix (PPM) and Introducing New Approaches and Tools (INAT). Our aims here are to help countries consider how to involve the private sector in improved TB treatment and to assist countries with planning for the introduction of new products.
The TB Alliance can only be successful in creating access to new TB regimens with the support and guidance of a wide array of partners. If you are working globally on access to TB medicines, or can help us prepare for introduction of new TB regimens in high burden countries, please be in touch.