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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 4-8

A review of literature on delays in seeking care for tuberculosis in different Indian states

Medical Consultant-Urban TB, Catholic Health Association of , Chhattisgarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Janmejaya Samal
C/O. Mr. Bijaya Ketan Samal, Pansapalli, P.O. Bangarada, Gangapur, Ganjam - 761 123, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/bjhs.bjhs_49_16

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The passive case-finding approach of Revised National Tuberculosis (TB) Control Programme in India strongly affects the health-seeking behavior of TB patients, the timing of help seeking as well as the subsequent delays associated with the same. Studies carried out in different parts of India reveal a host of several factors for delay in seeking help and the reasons for not seeking help at all. Important reasons for delayed health-seeking behavior include financial constraint, symptoms are not severe (as perceived by the patients), work pressure, lack of awareness, first consulted nonpublic sector, inaccessibility to health facility, home remedy, social stigma, self-medication, transport problem, and dissatisfaction with health facility. Similarly, the median patient delay ranged from 7 to 56 days as reported by various studies. Health-seeking behavior and related delays are of utmost importance in TB care from two important perspectives; first, TB requires timely treatment, and second, it requires protracted treatment. Required level of knowledge and a positive health behavior helps the patients in taking timely help from an appropriate health facility. Moreover, timely help-seeking prevents further spread of the disease and helps in establishing a TB-free society.

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