Viet Nam Countrywide Tuberculosis Diagnostic Network Optimization (Viet Nam TB DNO Phase II)

What is the project?

The Viet Nam TB Diagnostic Network Optimization (DNO) Phase II project is an expansion of the joint initiative between FIND and the Viet Nam National Tuberculosis Program (VNTP). It builds upon the earlier TB DNO analysis conducted in 9 provinces in Viet Nam in 2021, which involved mapping and analyzing the existing diagnostic network and modeling the impact of scaling up molecular testing. The project aims to optimize the TB diagnostic network across all 63 provinces and cities in Viet Nam, with a focus on increasing access to rapid molecular tests, improving referral linkages through a regular efficient sample transportation system, and enhancing the capacity of the Viet Nam country team in DNO and the use of OptiDx software to enable them to update existing models as well as build new future models, define and implement optimization models, and generate actionable outputs to inform decision-making and planning processes.

Why are we working on it?

The previous DNO analysis revealed that the utilization of GeneXpert® devices and other testing instruments including TrueNat™ and TB-LAMP was suboptimal, hindering the ability to meet the growing demand for molecular testing. Additionally, challenges related to sample transportation and limited access to diagnostic services, especially drug susceptibility testing (DST), were identified. To address these issues, DNO is a geospatial analysis approach to analyze the current diagnostic network and recommend the type, number, and optimal location of diagnostic platforms, as well as the associated specimen referral network that together enable the best possible access to diagnostic services while maximizing overall diagnostic system efficiency.

What are its objectives?

The project aims to:

  • Build the capacity of the country team and enable a core team of DNO practitioners, that include: (a) DNO strategic decision-makers who lead the DNO work and (b) OptiDx analysts who use OptiDx to conduct the DNO analysis independently.
  • Support country team to define and run appropriate optimization models based on priority questions to be identified.
  • Support the local team to generate implementable outputs that support the decision-making process by VNTP.

What does it involve?

The project involves country-wide data collection and consolidation for DNO analysis, analyzing various scenarios to increase access to rapid molecular drug susceptibility testing (DST) and WHO-approved TB rapid molecular tests, to introduce new sensitive TB screening techniques into the national diagnostic algorithm, and to improve referral linkages through an efficient sample transportation system. Furthermore, capacity building activities are conducted to empower the Viet Nam country team in DNO and OptiDx modeling.

What is the expected outcome?

  • Enhanced Access to WHO-approved TB Rapid Molecular Tests: DNO recommends suitable sites for the placement of equipment, and determines the required number and type of devices in the network, thereby increasing the capacity and coverage of TB testing. This will ensure improved access to reliable and efficient diagnostic tools for the detection of TB.
  • Improved Linkages Between Referring and Testing Sites: DNO aims to establish better connections between sites involved in sample referral and testing. By optimizing route plans, transport modes, and costs, the project introduces efficiencies in the transportation process. This will lead to streamlined workflows, reduced delays, and improved coordination, ultimately enhancing the overall effectiveness of the diagnostic network.
  • Proficiency in OptiDx and Data Analysis: The DNO country team gains proficiency in utilizing OptiDx, the digital tool used for analysis within the project. Through training and experience, the team members develop the skills and expertise needed to effectively run analysis, interpret results, and make informed decisions based on the data generated by OptiDx. This enables them to maximize the benefits of the DNO project and effectively optimize the diagnostic network.

What is the time scale?

The project is scheduled to run from October 2022 to September 2023.

Partners and Funding

The project is jointly undertaken by FIND Viet Nam and the Viet Nam National TB Program (VNTP), with funding from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.