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Int J Tuberc Lung Dis. 2013 Sep;17(9):1170-7. doi: 10.5588/ijtld.12.0934.

Tuberculosis screening for long-term care: a cost-effectiveness analysis.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. gverma@ualberta.ca

Abstract

SETTING:

Long-term care facilities in Canada, a low tuberculosis (TB) incidence country.

OBJECTIVE:

To compare the impact and cost-effectiveness of three screening strategies for TB on entry to long-term care: no screening, screening for latent tuberculous infection (LTBI) using the tuberculin skin test (TST) or screening for active disease with a chest X-ray.

DESIGN:

Cost effectiveness analysis.

RESULTS:

With the LTBI screening strategy, the number needed to screen to prevent one active case was 1410 and the cost per case averted was Canadian $109 913. The number needed to screen to prevent one case using the active screening strategy was 1266, and the cost per case averted was $672 298.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings suggest that TB screening strategies on entry to long-term care are costly, with large numbers needed to screen. Screening with TST was more cost-effective than chest X-ray screening. Higher risk of reactivation of LTBI is associated with improved cost-effectiveness of screening. Short time horizons and test performance characteristics place limitations on screening programmes in this setting. Future considerations include the changing demographics of the institutionalised elderly.

PMID:
23928166
DOI:
10.5588/ijtld.12.0934
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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