The Food and Drug Administration approved a new tuberculosis medicine that makes treatment for the hardest-to-treat cases shorter and more effective. This is the first TB drug from the nonprofit group, the TB Alliance. The TB Alliance was created to come up with better treatments. This pill, along with two other antibiotics, cured about 90% of patients with a very drug-resistant strain of TB, usually within six months in the key study.
Decades of incomplete or ineffective treatments have resulted in TB strains that have become drug-resistant and are not normally cured by long-standard medicines. Worldwide, TB kills about 1.6 million people annually. This new treatment plan could help over 75,000 patients per year, mostly in India, China, Indonesia, South Africa and Nigeria. Though the number of severe cases in the U.S is low, the FDA’s action will most likely be approved soon in countries where it’s endemic.
The TB Alliance will work with the World Health Organization to speed up the use of the treatment countries that are dying from TB. The alliance is contracting with multiple generic manufacturers to make the antibiotic and keep it affordable.