Zimbabwe is currently faced with shortages of Drug Sensitive Tuberculosis treatment, with the current stock of the medicine in the country expected to run out by the end of November this year, the Ministry of Health and Childcare has confirmed.
In a statement, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Childcare Air Commodore (Dr) Jasper Chimedza said the shortages of the Rifabutin 150mg tablets used in the treatment of Drug Sensitive Tuberculosis is associated with active pharmaceutical ingredient quality issues at the manufacturer level, and the next shipment delivery of the tablets should be expected in the middle of next year.
“The country is currently faced with the shortages of Rifabutin 150mg tablets used in the treatment of Drug Sensitive Tuberculosis (DS-TB) among TB/HIV co-infected patients on second line antiretroviral therapy (ART). The shortages are associated with active pharmaceutical ingredient quality issues at the manufacturer level. The next shipment delivery is expected in mid-2021.
“Based on the current stock levels of the commodity, the country will be stocked out by the end of November 2020” the statement reads.
Dr Chimedza urged clinics across the country to stop initiating new patients on a Rifabutin based regimen.
“Clinics are recommended to do the following:, (i) Initiate patients on a Rifampicin based regimen (2RHZE/2RH), (ii) Substitute Atazanavir/Ritonavir (ATV/r) with Lopinavi/Ritonavir (LPV/r), and either give LPV/r twice daily (double the dose) OR increase Ritonavir to 400mg (super boosting), (iii) Monitor closely for potential adverse events due to high dosage,” he said.