Child Contact Case Management-A Major Policy-Practice Gap in High-Burden Countries

Pathogens. 2021 Dec 21;11(1):1. doi: 10.3390/pathogens11010001.


The 2021 Global Tuberculosis (TB) report shows slow progress towards closing the pediatric TB detection gap and improving the TB preventive treatment (TPT) coverage among child and adolescent contacts. This review presents the current knowledge around contact case management (CCM) in low-resource settings, with a focus on child contacts, which represents a key priority population for CCM and TPT. Compelling evidence demonstrates that CCM interventions are a key gateway for both TB case finding and identification of those in need of TPT, and their yield and effectiveness should provide a strong rationale for prioritization by national TB programs. A growing body of evidence is now showing that innovative models of care focused on community-based and patient-centered approaches to household contact investigation can help narrow down the CCM implementation gaps that we are currently facing. The availability of shorter and child-friendly TPT regimens for child contacts provide an additional important opportunity to improve TPT acceptability and adherence. Prioritization of TB CCM implementation and adequate resource mobilization by ministries of health, donors and implementing agencies is needed to timely close the gap.

Keywords: contact case management; contact investigation; implementation gaps; prevention; tuberculosis; tuberculosis preventive therapy.

Publication types

  • Review