The Uganda National Tuberculosis Reference Laboratory was started as the Uganda Bacteriological Investigation Unit in the late 1950’s under the then East African Community. The laboratory participated in anti TB clinical trials and drug toxicities under the then British Medical Research Council (MRC).
After the collapse of the East African Community in 1970’s, the laboratory reverted to the line ministries. Its name changed to Central Tuberculosis laboratory (CTBL) in 1980’s and National Tuberculosis Reference Laboratory in the 1990’S.
The Uganda National Tuberculosis Reference Laboratory established under the National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Programme (NLTP) of the Ministry of Health (MoH) received accreditation from the WHO in April 2013, making it the first SRL in East Africa, and the second in Sub-Saharan Africa to achieve this status.