On Friday, HCA submitted comments on a proposed state Department of Health (DOH) rule that would replace annual tuberculosis (TB) testing of home care and other health care workers with annual individual risk assessment and education, and further testing as indicated.
Our comments are here.
The proposed rule is here.
In our comments, we support the proposed requirement for an initial individual TB risk assessment, symptom evaluation, and TB test of personnel prior to employment and annual assessments thereafter. Annual TB assessments would include education, individual risk assessment and follow-up tests as indicated.
This change aligns with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other associations’ updated recommendations which discourage routine serial testing and, instead, focus on evaluating individual risk and encouraging treatment for persons with untreated latent TB infection.
This proposed rule also addresses last year’s nationwide shortage of one of the products for TB skin testing as well as reports we received from members of increased costs for TB tests.