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    An Assessment of Knowledge and Practices Regarding Tuberculosis in the Context of RNTCP Among Non Allopathic Practitioners in Gwalior District

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    Introduction: India has the highest TB burden accounting for one-fifth of the global incidence with an estimated 1.98 million cases. Non- allopathic practitioners are the major service providers especially in rural and peri-urban areas, treating not just patients of diarrhea, respiratory infections and abdominal Pain but also of tuberculosis. Objectives: To assess the knowledge of sign and symptoms of TB and its management as per the RNTCP guidelines and to assess the practicing pattern regarding tuberculosis. Material & Methods: The present was carried out among the registered non allopathic practitioners providing their services in Gwalior District during the study period. A total of 150 non allopathic practitioners of various methods from both government and private sectors were interviewed using a pre-designed, pre-tested semi-structured questionnaire. The information was collected on the General profile of the participant, knowledge about signs and symptoms of TB and its management, practices commonly adopted in the management and their views on involvement of non allopathic practitioners in RNTCP programme. Result: The average score of government practitioners was 7.3 compared to 4.6 by private practitioners. There was a statistically significant difference between the two group on issue related to the management of TB patients as per the RNTCP guidelines. Government practitioners relied mostly on sputum examination for diagnosis and follow up compared to private practitioners who chose other modalities like X-ray, blood examination for this work. Conclusion: There is a gap in knowledge and practices of practitioners of both the sectors. Some serious efforts were required to upgrade the knowledge of non allopathic practitioners if the government is serious about controlling tuberculosis in India