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Private Practitioners, Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program, Knowledge
Background: India's aim to achieve tuberculosis (TB) eradication by 2025 necessitates the engagement of all stakeholders, encompassing both private and public sectors, across all phases of the TB program – spanning from diagnosis to the curative outcome. However, certain private practitioners pursue an individualized approach instead of adopting a collective strategy, thereby contributing to the emergence of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. Consequently, in order to formulate an enhanced strategy that fosters improved collaboration and professional behavioral change among all partners, it is imperative to comprehensively assess their level of knowledge.
Aim: This study aims to assess the knowledge level of private practitioners with regard to the diagnosis and management of pulmonary tuberculosis cases within the framework of the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP).
Methodology: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among 78 selected private practitioners located in seven towns within the Sonepat district of Haryana State, India. The study was approved by the ethics committee of Bhagat Phool Singh Government Medical College for Women, Sonepat, Haryana. Data collection involved the utilization of a self-administered, pre-tested, semi-structured questionnaire. Descriptive analysis was applied, utilizing proportions and percentages.
Results: The collective understanding of private practitioners concerning Tuberculosis and RNTCP was found to be deficient. Around one-third of the practitioners reported that they had not received any visits from health workers in relation to RNTCP. A mere 33% of the practitioners had attended any Continuing Medical Education (CME) sessions, and only a quarter of the participants expressed an intention to collaborate with the RNTCP program.
Conclusions: In conclusion, this study underscores the necessity for RNTCP to focus on fostering the willingness of private practitioners to engage with the program, while simultaneously enhancing their knowledge about Tuberculosis and RNTCP.
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