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No. 2, 2009

News from the 2009 National TB Conference

Poster Competition Winners

In June 2009, the National TB Controllers Association (NTCA) held its fourth annual poster contest at the National TB Conference in Atlanta. This year, 55 posters were developed and submitted by TB program staff from throughout the country, and were available for viewing during most of the meeting. A panel of judges reviewed and rated the posters on three criteria areas:

  1. Relevance to TB control or elimination
    Topic provides information that can potentially be transferred to another program; addresses or identifies a high-priority area of TB program or problematic area; provides strategy for better use of resources.
  2. Clarity of information
    Information is clearly written, and uses short sentences and bulleted points to enhance readability; adequate amount of information provided to understand project, but not a complete journal article!
  3. Graphic presentation
    Graphics are used to clearly present information (photographs to demonstrate or model, graphs and charts to display data); graphics are appealing to the viewer (not crowded, colors are used appropriately). 

The poster judges for this year were Wanda Walton, John Jereb, Bob Pratt, Tracy Dalton, and Cheryl Tryon. A special thanks to them for their diligence.

This year the judges gave two first-place awards because of ties among the entrants, one second-place award, and one third-place award.

first place poster contest winnner - Multidrug-Resistant TB in the Federated States of Micronesia:  Case and Contact Characteristics, Treatment Strategies and ChallengesA first-place award was given for the poster “Multidrug-Resistant TB in the Federated States of Micronesia: Case and Contact Characteristics, Treatment Strategies and Challenges.” The authors were Dorina Fred, from the TB/Leprosy Program in Chuuk/Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia; Sapna Bamrah, Rinn Song, Mitesh Desai, Sundari Mase, and Andy Heetderks, CDC; Mayleen Ekiek, Dept. of Health & Social Services, Pohnpei, FSM; Helden Heldart and Joe Kenit, TB/Leprosy Program, Chuuk, FSM; Boris Pavlin,  WHO/Pohnpei, FSM; Richard Brostrom, Dept. of Public Health, Saipan, CNMI; and Masae Kawamura, Curry National TB Center, San Francisco, CA. Dorina Fred presented the poster.

First Place Poster Winner - Enhanced Surveillance on Access to Care to Prevent TB among the Foreign  Born – Connecticut,  2005–2008The other first-place prize went to the poster “Enhanced Surveillance on Access to Care to Prevent TB among the Foreign Born – Connecticut, 2005–2008.” Authors were Alice Guh, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer; Lynn Sosa and James Hadler of the Connecticut Department of Public Health; and Mark Lobato, CDC. Lynn Sosa presented the poster.

The award for second place was given for the poster “Development of MDR TB Case Study Modules.” Authors included Sharoda Dasgupta, Sarah Segerlind, and Sundari Mase, CDC; Barbara Seaworth, Heartland National TB Center, San Antonio, TX; Alfred Lardizabal, Global TB Institute, Newark, NJ; Masae Kawamura, Curry National TB Center, San Francisco, CA; David Ashkin, Southeastern National TB Center, Gainesville, FL; and Charles Daley, National Jewish Health, Denver, CO. The poster was presented by Sharoda Dasgupta.

The third-place winner was the poster “Responding to the Changing Epidemiology of TB in Gwinnett County, Georgia.”  Authors included Rose-Marie Sales, from the Georgia Dept. of Human Resources; Alana Sulka and William Blomenkamp of the East Metro Health District, Lawrenceville, GA; Lisa Watson of the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, Atlanta, GA; and Beverly DeVoe-Payton with CDC and the Georgia Dept. of Human Resources. Rose-Marie Sales presented the poster.

Congratulations to the winners of this year’s competition, and thank you to all submitters for sharing your data, experiences, and excellent solutions!

—Submitted by Regina Bess and Ann Lanner
Div of TB Elimination

Presentation of Special Awards

On June 18, the last day of the 2009 National TB Conference, Dr. Philip LoBue, Associate Director for Science for DTBE, presented special awards to two individuals at the conference. For those who missed this part of the conference, we share this summary of the presentation.

Dr. LoBue announced, “We have two special awards we would like to make at this time. We would first like to recognize Dr. Dorina Fred, Chuuk TB clinician, for her work. Dr. Fred has been quietly and competently managing 16 multidrug-resistant patients in the TB isolation ward since she opened it last August. Ten of these patients are children. In addition to these 16, on any given day, she is managing 50 to 60 active, drug-susceptible TB cases on her island. Her program has also initiated LTBI therapy for over 100 MDR contacts using daily DOT.  One year ago, she had three staff members; she now manages 21.

“Her work has brought calm to the storm of MDR in her community, and she has reduced the number of TB deaths by 90 percent in one year. Dr. Fred has become a respected leader in her community, and through her actions she has improved the overall health of that community. For her continued efforts, we would like to present her with this small token of our appreciation.”

Award winners: Dr. Dorina Fred and Dr. Richard Brostrom She was presented with a plaque, which reads, The Division of Tuberculosis Elimination presents a Special CDC Service Award to Dr. Dorina Fred.

For gentle compassion to your tuberculosis patients

For untiring commitment to your community
For remarkable advances to your State program
For exemplary performance to the Nation's TB Controllers
For valuable service to the entire Pacific Region

Given this 18th day of June, 2009.

Mr. Phil Talboy, Deputy Director, DTBE, escorted Dr. Fred to the stage, where she received the award. The audience gave her a standing ovation for this recognition.

Dr. LoBue continued, “We would also like to acknowledge Dr. Richard Brostrom. When the Federated States of Micronesia requested assistance and additional regional support was required, Dr. Brostrom made it his priority to roll up his sleeves, and join the local Chuuk TB program and the CDC team for the outbreak investigation.

“Since that time, Dr. Brostrom has returned to Chuuk almost every month to help Dr. Fred with treatment of the cases and administrative support to implement the changes you just heard about. While providing crucial expertise, Dr. Brostrom never forgot about the patients—soliciting support, delivering gifts, and helping to arrange classroom education for the patients. He was instrumental in making life at the hospital the best it could be.

“Dr. Brostrom has been a humble, unifying presence in the U.S.-Affiliated Pacific Islands for the last 12 years. For his tireless service, we would like to acknowledge him with this small token of our appreciation.”

Dr. Brostrom also received a standing ovation from the audience. He received a plaque as well; the inscription reads,

The Division of Tuberculosis Elimination presents a Special CDC Service Award to Dr. Richard Brostrom.

It is with great esteem that we acknowledge the significant contributions of a thoughtful person whose efforts have indeed changed the world for TB patients, health care workers, and fellow residents in the U.S.-Affiliated Pacific Islands.

Given this 18th day of June, 2009.

Drs. Fred and Brostrom are richly deserving of this recognition (which was in addition to winning one of the first-place awards in the poster competition), and everyone present was clearly delighted to see them receive these awards.

Speaking for our colleagues in DTBE, we thank Drs. Fred and Brostrom for their dedication and hard work on behalf of the citizens of Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia. We are honored to work with such outstanding partners.

—Reported by Andy Heetderks, MPH, and Phil LoBue, MD
Div of TB Elimination

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