PURPOSE: The Suffolk County, New York, Department of Health Services, Bureau of Chest Diseases (BCD), Targeted Tuberculosis (TB) Testing and Treatment (TT) Program reached out to foreign-born populations at increased risk for latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) who accounted for 75 % of TB cases in SC between 2000 and 2004. Of those program participants begun on LTBI treatment, 78.2% completed treatment.
METHODS: The TT program identified social networks that served our target population and provided education about TB and the TT program, stressing that TT program was “stand alone” and would offer free, comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services for LTBI. The TT program employed the following strategy: on-site portable chest radiograph were performed at time of the time of TB test reading; a “mobile clinic” was held on-site at the time of the TB test reading; short course LTBI treatment regimens (e.g., a 4-months course of Rifampin) were employed to treat LTBI; for some groups Quanti-feron TB™ assay aided in the diagnosis of LTBI; custom designed TT clinic flow sheets allowed nursing personnel to rapidly and accurately complete clinical assessments of LTBI patients and locally developed linguistically and culturally appropriate TB awareness/education material were distributed.
RESULTS: The TTP educated 3,310 persons of whom 1,473 persons participated in a TB evaluation, 132 (9%) of the participants were previously positive reactors. A TB test was performed on 1,341 persons of whom 1,303 (97 %) returned for a reading. Four hundred and sixty (460) new positive reactors (34%) were found. A total of 409 positive reactors were started on LTBI treatment of whom 320 (78.2%) completed treatment. Five cases of TB disease were found.
CONCLUSION: Introducing an innovative, free LTBI diagnostic and treatment program to social networks serving foreign-born populations at increased risk for LTBI achieved high LTBI completion of therapy rates.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: High LTBI completion of therapy rates can be obtained in a foreign-born population, potentially reducing the number of active cases that may develop in this population.
DISCLOSURE: Lewis Mooney, None.