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Effective TB Interviewing for Contact Investigation: Self-Study Modules

Return to Module 4 Table of Contents


Associate – a person who has been identified by the index patient in a source case investigation as someone with whom he or she spends prolonged, frequent time. A person who is somehow affiliated with a patient who has noninfectious tuberculosis or another contact, often used in connection with source-case investigations.

Outbreak – a greater-than-normal or greater-than-expected number of individuals infected or diagnosed with suspected or verified TB in a given period of time or a particular place.

Proxy – a person who is interviewed in the place of the index patient; proxies can be family members or close friends. A proxy is used if the patient is deceased, physically or mentally hindered, very young, uncooperative, or unable to be located.

Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis – A method of DNA fingerprinting, which can be used to identify specific strains of M. tuberculosis and, thus, track TB transmission during outbreaks.

Social network – linkage of persons or places where TB is spread through shared air space and common ties (e.g., social) amongst the persons and settings involved.

Social network analysis – looking at routinely collected interview data to find common links amongst both cases and infected persons; these links may be persons or places.

Source case – a person with infectious TB disease who is responsible for spreading M. tuberculosis to another person or persons.

Source case investigation – the process of conducting a public health investigation to determine who may have transmitted M. tuberculosis to a patient when recent transmission is reported. Source case investigations can be applied to both recent transmissions in infected adults and children and for disease in very young children.

Undocumented – the term used to describe a person who is not in the country on a valid visa.

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