So here I have with me ‘Let’s Talk TB‘, a booklet published by GP Clinics that aims to aid GPs (general practitioners) in dealing with this much formidable health problem that affects over 2 million Indians every year. The book is a compilation of articles published in GP Clinics written by a spectrum of subject experts, and is proposed to beef up GPs and private practitioners with the knowledge of the current best practices for TB diagnosis and treatment.
Contrary to what you might assume at first, this book is not about fiddly figures and cumbersome passages of data that are tedious to go through. I find it amazing that it carries a conspicuous academic focus, almost consistent with actual didactic teaching. There are parts of its text that take you back to your Microbiology and Pathology days. Being prudent about the amount of information provided, it exquisitely blends and integrates raw academic information with those pertinent to everyday general practice and of public health importance.
Language has been kept lucid and clear throughout. The authors and editors have ingeniously kept the read from becoming monotonous by introducing CME MCQs and punctuating the text with pertinent tables, photographs and data boxes.
It’s really commendable that the book packs in a surprisingly sizeable amount of information in just over 80 pages, allowing a comfortable sail through it. Being exhaustive and thorough, it touches upon nearly every piece of information that GPs need to arm themselves with — from collection of sputum samples and importance of molecular tests to the management of Drug-resistant TB, and the common pitfalls GPs need to be assiduous at avoiding.
As its prime purpose, the book delineates wonderfully the role and scope of a GP in TB care, including a meticulous description of the do’s and don’ts and the major discrepancies in TB management common to many GPs and private practitioners today. Including a chapter on counselling of TB patients and patient based care was a great idea.
In the present scenario, where there’s a dire need to address the ambiguity amongst general practitioners regarding the practical dealings with this disease, and also to awaken them to their duties as regards public health, this book can be counted on as a one stop destination for nearly everything relevant, from theoretical information to practical guidelines. I reckon it to be a must have resource for GPs and applaud GP Clinics for graciously making it available for free access.
Dr Soham D Bhaduri is a medical graduate and a Philosophy of Mind enthusiast, and blogs at www.freethinkingmedic.blogspot.com.
Note: This book can be downloaded freely at www.letstalktb.org.