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Travel Med Infect Dis. 2010 Mar;8(2):96-103. doi: 10.1016/j.tmaid.2010.02.006. Epub 2010 Apr 1.

Air Travel and TB: an airline perspective.

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British Airways plc, Waterside (HMAG), PO Box 365, Harmondsworth, UB7 0GB, UK. <>


The commercial airline industry in the 21st century is a global business, able to transport large numbers of people to almost any part of the world within a few hours. There has long been concern in public health circles about the potential for transmission of communicable diseases, such as TB, on board aircraft. The recent threats from novel and emerging infectious diseases including SARS and pandemic flu has facilitated unprecedented levels of cooperation between international industry representatives, regulators and public health authorities in addressing the issues of air travel and communicable disease. This paper reviews the regulatory environment, ways in which the risks are mitigated through aspects of aircraft design, opportunities for prevention by identifying individuals who may be suffering from a communicable disease prior to flight and the approach used in managing suspected cases of communicable disease on board aircraft.

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