Objective: To analyse trends of tuberculosis (TB) in Oman (1981-2005) in relation to the socio-economic development of the country.
Methods: Data were used from the National Tuberculosis Control Programme (NTP). Information on TB cases' age, sex and type were obtained from the national book (1981-1991) and the computer database (1992-2005).
Results: TB notification rates among Omani nationals declined by more than 85% from 1981 to 1995. During the period 1981-1993, the TB notification rate declined by around 15% per year, compared to only 3.6% per year in subsequent years. Males and the age group > or = 50 years have higher rates than females and younger age groups, respectively. Non-nationals contributed 21% of all TB cases notified and 40% of all smear-positive cases. Of cases among nationals notified between 2004 and 2005, 95% had a family income lower than the national average.
Conclusion: Although TB notification in Oman has declined by more than 85% over the last 25 years, the decline has slowed down over the last 10 years, requiring a detailed analysis of existing TB control measures and implementation of additional measures for TB elimination.