TB remains the single biggest killer of adults in the world - someone dies of TB every 15 seconds, nearly all in developing countries. TB particularly affects the poor. TB is a highly stigmatised disease - that is, TB patients are despised and shunned by the public. This adversely affects their lives, leading to isolation and depression, and limits their access to diagnosis and treatment. Up until now, the causes of this stigma and discrimination have not been properly studied.
Progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) has been uneven. Poor and otherwise disadvantaged groups lag behind their more fortunate compatriots for most MDGs.To make things worse, effective interventions are known, but rarely reach those who need them most. Unfortunately, little is known about how to effectively reach poor and otherwise disadvantaged groups, and how to address socio-economic inequalities in mortality.