The epidemiology of tuberculosis in Kenya, a high TB/HIV burden country (2000-2013)
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Interest in the epidemiology of TB was triggered by the re-emergence of tuberculosis in the early 1990’s with the advent of HIV and falling economic status of many people which subjected them to poverty. The dual lethal combination of HIV and poverty triggered an unprecedented TB epidemic. In this study, we focused on the period 2000-2013 and all the notified data in Kenya was included. Data on estimates of TB incidence, prevalence and mortality was extracted from the WHO global Tuberculosis database. Data was analysed to produce trends for each of the years and descriptive statistics were calculated. The results showed that there was an average decline of 5% over the last 8 years with the highest decline being reported in the year 2012/13. TB continues to disproportionately affect the male gender with 58% being male and 42% being female. Kenya has made significant efforts to address the burden of HIV among TB patients with cotrimoxazole preventive therapy (CPT) uptake reaching 98% and ART at 74% by the end of 2013. Kenya’s TB epidemic has evolved over time and it has been characterised by a period where there was increase in the TB cases reaching a peak in the year 2007 after which there was a decline which began to accelerate in the year 2011. The gains in the decline of TB could be attributed in part to the outcomes of integrating TB and HIV services and these gains should be sustained. What is equally notable is the clear epidemiologic shift in age indicating reduced transmission in the younger age groups.