The Event of DOTS and the Transformation of the Tuberculosis Syndemic in India

in The Cambridge Journal of Anthropology
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  • 1 Aarhus University
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Directly Observed Treatment – Short-course (DOTS) has been promoted by the WHO globally as the preferred standard approach to tuberculosis control and treatment since the mid 1990s. In India, DOTS has been gradually implemented as a national programme since 1997, covering the entire country by 2006. DOTS is a highly complex healthcare intervention that involves universal monitoring of all patients, access to high quality drugs and the adoption of an individually supervised drug intake by patients through a system of DOT-providers. This article discusses the gradual implementation of DOTS in India as an intervention based on politically agreed 'truths' that create 'successful treatment stories' and 'defaulters', and it explores dimensions of temporality linked to the understanding of 'event' at different ontological scales from the perspectives of 'defaulters' and the health care system respectively.


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