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Lung India. 2019 Jan-Feb;36(1):28-31. doi: 10.4103/lungindia.lungindia_324_18.

Is it feasible to carry out active case finding for tuberculosis in community-based settings?

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1
Department of Community Medicine, Pondicherry Institute of Medical Sciences, Puducherry, India.

Abstract

Introduction and Objective:

To achieve elimination of tuberculosis by 2025, identifying the remaining 25% of missed cases would play a major role. But there is paucity of evidence on this statement. This study aimed to assess feasibility of active case finding for tuberculosis in selected region of Puducherry.

Methods:

Community based survey was conducted by groups of trained undergraduate medical students. During January 2018, all residents of study area were assessed for presence of presumptive symptoms related to tuberculosis. Presumptive cases of tuberculosis were identified as per the programme definition and the same were facilitated to undergo follow up necessary investigations to rule out tuberculosis through frequent domiciliary visits. The data collection was done using mobile based Epicollect open access app. Feasibility was assessed using indicators namely household coverage, proportions of presumptive cases identified and undergone follow up investigations, number needed to screen for presumptive and confirmed cases of tuberculosis and average time spent per person.

Results:

Of the 2252 houses, 1746 were covered resulting in a response rate of 77.5% and included 6606 residents. Of the 55 presumptive cases identified (55/6606) 51 underwent investigations (51/55). Two new cases of tuberculosis were diagnosed in this survey. To identify one presumptive and confirmed case 120, 3303 people need to be screened respectively.

Conclusion:

Active case finding for tuberculosis is feasible provided the health system is able to invest adequate human resources and referral linkages to support peripheral centres.

KEYWORDS:

Active case finding; community; feasibility; tuberculosis

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