6.3.1. Background

In many high TB burden countries, the majority of missing people with TB, including children, seek treatment from private providers or other care providers not linked to the public sector at least once (174). The private sector is also a common point of care for children presenting with common illnesses, such as cough, fever and diarrhoea, especially in countries with a large private sector (175). In these countries, people with or at risk of TB are unlikely to access good-quality TB services if the NTP does not comprehensively engage the private sector.

The 2018 WHO Roadmap towards ending TB in children and adolescents prioritizes the need to foster functional partnerships to optimize TB care, including with the private sector (5). The private health care sector provides an entry point to TB care and treatment, including for children, adolescents and their families (174–176). This implies that NTPs should engage both the public and private health sectors, especially as countries intensify efforts towards achieving universal health coverage.

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