In August 2013, after two years of highly intensive treatment for extensively drug resistant TB (XDR-TB), MSF patient Phumeza Tisile was diagnosed as clinically well (‘cured’), having had more than 5 consecutive negative sputum culture results in the last 12 months of treatment. Staff and patients celebrated her good news at Lizo Nobanda TB Care Centre, which MSF handed over to St John’s Hospice in July 2013.
Phumeza was the first patient enrolled on MSF’s ‘Strengthened Regimen’ progamme which is being piloted within the well-established Decentralised Drug Resistant TB (DR-TB) Programme in Khayelitsha. Of the 22 patients enrolled to receive a tailored regimen (including linezolid) since July 2011, Phumeza is the first to be cured.
Phumeza has blogged extensively about her experience with XDR-TB on MSF’s TB+ME blog: blogs.msf.org/tb/author/phumeza/ and was one of the authors of the TB Manifesto msfaccess.com/TBManifesto