The National Institute of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Diseases on Wednesday agreed to administer life-saving drug Bedaquiline to an 18-year-old woman from Patna who suffers from drug-resistant form of TB. “The drug has to be given in combination with other drugs, but doctors at the institute cannot give it to her without first conducting a drug-susceptibility test,” said Saket Sikri, the lawyer representing the institute at the Delhi High Court.

On January 9, the hospital had refused to give the woman access to Bedaquiline, saying it may cause the drug-resistant bacteria to spread in her body. The patient, who has been undergoing treatment for the disease since 2013, has already developed a resistance to all other available drugs to treat TB.

Her father had moved the Delhi High Court, seeking access to bedaquiline alleging that doctors at the institute had denied her access to the drug because she was not a domicile of Delhi. He had first approached the hospital in October. Currently, Bedaquiline is incorporated into the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme at six hospitals in five cities – Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Ahmedabad, and Guwahati.

Sikri said the institute had decided to “change its decision” on the basis of the drug-susceptibility report dated May 2016. “During the last hearing, the petitioner had submitted the report. It was studied by the doctors, and the decision to start her on the treatment was made,” the lawyer said.

The petitioner’s lawyer, Anand Grover, asked the court whether the woman can be given Bedaquiline at Mumbai’s PD Hinduja Hospital, where she was admitted earlier. The court is likely to pronouce its judgment in the case on Friday. had written about the patient’s plight and how her treatment reflects the failure of the national TB programme. Grover said the case will set precedence allowing TB patients with better access to life-saving drugs. Apart from Bedaquilin, the Patna resident is also advised to take Delaminate, a TB drug that is not available in India yet.