Smartphones enlisted in the war against tuberculosis

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It’s really a pity that Americans with TB [1] who can’t afford to protect their neighbors will just have to go around spreading it.

[1] Assuming they can get diagnosed, of course.


Similar work has been going on in developing countries for years now, with strong verification methods and at affordable prices. For example, Operation ASHA ( serves millions of patients annually with an extremely low-cost biometric system called eCompliance to reach extremely disadvantaged communities. But technology alone won’t address issues of verification and outreach. The model of delivery is imperative, and even more importantly, the linkages with free treatment (particularly for MDR/XDR patients). A fine idea, but considering the initiatives already present, perhaps it’s better to highlight and scale those which have been tested by aid agencies, proven, and which are already running than recreate the wheel again (presumably a significantly higher cost).

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