NTP Laboratory Network Assessment: Strategic Directions to Improve Access and Quality of TB Diagnostic Services Assessment Report

The National TB Program has embarked on the new Philippine Strategic TB Elimination Plan Phase One: 2017–2022, setting targets and objectives to significantly reduce TB mortality and prevalence by 2022. Among the key activities in the plan is to ensure the access of all priority patients to rapid TB diagnosis along with drug susceptibility testing for rifampicin. This entails the expanded deployment of the new RDTs, exemplified by Xpert, at the primary level of care. The NTP envisions using RDTs as the initial TB diagnostic test within the short term. This assessment was done to gather information on the laboratory network’s capacity to provide access to diagnostic services, particularly the new rapid TB diagnostics at the primary level of care, identify factors that serve as barriers to ensuring the provision of continuous and reliable laboratory services, and to propose actions to address the identified barriers.

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