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Int J Tuberc Lung Dis. 2011 Jun;15 Suppl 2:S58-63. doi: 10.5588/ijtld.10.0417.

Measuring socio-economic data in tuberculosis prevalence surveys.

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KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation, The Hague, The Netherlands.


Addressing social determinants in the field of tuberculosis (TB) has received great attention in the past years, mainly due to the fact that worldwide TB incidence has not declined as much as expected, despite highly curative control strategies. One of the objectives of the World Health Organization Global Task Force on TB Impact Measurement is to assess the prevalence of TB disease in 22 high-burden countries by active screening of a random sample of the general population. These surveys provide a unique opportunity to assess socio-economic determinants in relation to prevalent TB and its risk factors. This article describes methods of measuring the socio-economic position in the context of a TB prevalence survey. An indirect measurement using an assets score is the most feasible way of doing this. Several examples are given from recently conducted prevalence surveys of the use of an assets score, its construction, and the analyses of the obtained data.

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