Treatment-seeking pathway(s) of patients diagnosed with Drug Resistant TB (DR TB) in selective areas of Bangladesh and associated stigma among health care providers: a Mixed Method Study

Bangladesh has an estimate of 1.4 per cent Multi Drug Resistant(MDR) tuberculosis (TB) cases in newly diagnosed pulmonary patients and 29 per cent estimate of MDR cases from previously treated TB cases. There have been studies which indicate the risk factors regarding MDR TB in Bangladesh, showing that previous treatment history and TB contact history were the main factors to be noted as a potential risk for MDR TB.

The objective of this research, conducted from October – December 2015,was to find out the treatment-seeking pathways undertaken by drug resistant tuberculosis (DR TB) patients who are currently under treatment, simultaneously examining the role of associated stigma among the providers and whether and how this affects the patients who seek treatment.

The specific objectives of the research study are:

  • To study the treatment seeking pathway for the DR TB patients under treatment at the time of data collection.
  • To understand the attitude of health care providers toward MDR TB patients and associated stigma.
  • To study whether the providers who bear stigma associated with MDR TB has any role in treatment-seeking by the patients.

The health seeking pathway of MDR TB patients was studied through both quantitative and qualitative approaches; the attitude and stigma of health providers was explored through qualitative interviews of both patients and providers. Three government hospitals - Chest Disease Hospitals in Dhaka, Chittagong and Sylhet - were the study sites. DR-TB patients aged 18 years and above and who had already been diagnosed and were admitted for treatment at the selected three Chest Disease Hospitals were the target group of the study. The health care providers who were responsible for the treatment and management of these patients were also included in the study.


Donor: GFATM-TB Research