WHO Collaborating Centre for Tuberculosis Research and Innovation
The UK's first WHO Collaborating Centre (CC) for TB Research and Innovation, headed by Dr Lele Rangaka, will serve to facilitate research initiatives and collaborations with the WHO on TB, TB-associated multimorbidity, pandemic preparedness, and vaccine development and readiness. The CC will be enabled by its affiliation with UCL-TB.
Collaborating Centres are designated by the Director-General of the WHO and form an 'international collaborative network' in a specific area of research. In our role as a collaboration centre, UCL will support the research and implementation of WHO TB programmes and activities globally.
Designation of UCL as a WHO Collaborating Centre (CC) on TB research and innovations provides an opportunity to further share its unique expertise, methods, lessons learned and challenges with public health policy makers, beneficiaries and providers in Member States in the WHO European Region. The workplan devised for the WHO Collaborating Centre on TB research and innovations accounts for technical inputs to (a) scale up of TB preventive treatment for persons at high risk, and (b) to develop and strengthen capacity within TB programmes.
Over the next four years, the collaboration centre aims to:
To support WHO in the implementation of WHO programmes and activities at country level
To support global policy development and facilitation of global TB research to generate new evidence
Implement research to scale up TB preventive treatment, including for contacts of people diagnosed with DR-TB.
Support country capacity building and human resource development on diagnostic research for TB national counterparts and TB communities.
TB Research and Innovation at the World Health Organization
The WHO European Region has made substantial progress in reducing the occurence and mortality of TB however, global disasters such as the COVID-19 pandemic and war in Ukraine have hindered progress towards regional targets as well as prevented access to treatment and care for TB patients. In particular, reducing the burden of drug-resistant TB WHO and TB/HIV coinfection has been a priority of the WHO Euro Region. the WHO supports Member States in implementing and increasing TB preventative treatment (TPT) through the national operalisation of the WHO policy guidance on TB prevention. Region-specific targets aim to reduce TB incidence by 90% by 2023 supported by the new Tuberculosis Action Plan by combining a disease-specific and health systems approach in order to place people at the centre of the response.