Factors associated with loss to follow-up among TB patients in rural Papua New Guinea

I Umo, M Kulai, Robert Commons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Papua New Guinea (PNG) is a lower middle-income country that has struggled to contain TB. The loss of patients to follow-up is a major contributing factor towards the high disease burden.
OBJECTIVE: To describe persons with drug-susceptible TB (DS-TB) registered for treatment at the Gaubin Rural Hospital (GRH) on Karkar Island, Madang Province, PNG, and to investigate factors associated with patient loss to follow-up (LTFU). DESIGN: A retrospective cohort study was conducted using data from GRH DS-TB registers. Factors associated with LTFU were investigated using univariable and multivariable logistic regression. RESULTS: A total of 722 patients were registered for DS-TB treatment and eligible for inclusion between 1 January 2014 and 30 June 2018, of whom 97 (13.4%) were lost to follow-up. Male sex was associated with an increased odds of LTFU (adjusted OR [aOR] 1.9, 95% CI 1.2–3.0; P = 0.005), as was travel time to GRH >3 h (aOR 3.7, 95%, CI 2.2–6.3; P  0.001). CONCLUSION: A high LTFU rate has been identified in patients with TB in PNG. This study found male sex and increased travel time from treatment location to be associated with unsuccessful treatment adherence, highlighting the need for further interventions to improve adherence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)186–190
Number of pages5
JournalPublic Health Action
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 2021


Dive into the research topics of 'Factors associated with loss to follow-up among TB patients in rural Papua New Guinea'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this