Health care workers, tuberculosis, and the human immunodeficiency virus epidemic.
Scand J Work, Environ & Health 1992 Jun; 18(Suppl 2):97-99
A working group of the Centers for Disease Control was established to address the implications of an epidemic of nosocomial multidrug resistant tuberculosis (TB) transmission. Of eight cases of active multidrug resistant TB reported in health care workers, four were seropositive for the human immunodeficiency virus, and all of these have died from TB. The group concluded that the prevention of TB transmission in health care settings requires that generation of infectious airborne particles be prevented by early identification and treatment of persons with TB infection and active TB; the elimination of the spread of infectious droplet nuclei into general air circulation by applying source control methods; reducing the number of infectious droplet nuclei in air contaminated with them; and surveillance of personnel in health care facilities for TB and TB infection. The use of ultraviolet germicidal irradiation to prevent TB transmission is controversial and its efficacy in clinical settings has not been demonstrated. Appropriate masks may be used to provide additional protection against TB transmission. A TB screening and prevention program for the personnel of health care facilities should be established for protecting both the personnel and the patients.
NIOSH-Author; Respiratory-system-disorders; Accident-prevention; Infectious-diseases; Disease-vectors; Control-technology; AIDS-virus; Acquired-immune-deficiency-syndrome; Bacterial-infections
Dr RJ Mullan, 1600 Clifton Road, NE F-40, Atlanta, Georgia 30333, USA
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health