Somalia | Priority areas | Tuberculosis


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A TB patient receives medicine at a TB centre in GaroweMore than 60 TB centres are established in Somalia. Photo credit: WHO.Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious bacterial disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which most commonly affects the lungs. It is one of the most common communicable diseases in Somalia.

The latest estimate for all forms of TB in Somalia was 290 per 100 000 population in 2009. The incidence of sputum smear positive cases was 160 per 100 000 population.

In recent years, high reported incidence rates of TB have made it a priority for national health authorities, WHO and their partners.                                                                                                     

The objectives of the TB programme are to:

provide technical support to  all Somali stakeholders in TB control and programme expansion

design and implement operational research to strengthen TB management

continuously train health workers in public and private institutions

supply quality-assured anti-TB drugs

support the initiation of a multidrug-resistant TB surveillance and management system.

National guidelines have been developed for the implementation of the directly-observed therapy, short course (DOTS) as the major TB control strategy. The national TB programme started implementing DOTS in 1995.

WHO has established around 66 TB centres in Somalia.

Regional Stop TB programme


Key health-related statistics

Total population (000s)12 316
Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births) 732
Total life expectancy at birth (years) 55.4

Source: Framework for health information systems and core indicators for monitoring health situation and health system performance, 2018

See Somalia country profile

Regional Health Observatory

Contact us

WHO Representative
WHO Liaison Office for Somalia in Nairobi
PO Box 63565