Skip to main content

Free Content Factors associated with identifying tuberculosis contacts

Download Article:
(PDF 190.3134765625 kb)
SETTING: Little is known about why some tuberculosis (TB) patients identify few or even no contacts.

OBJECTIVES: To describe patient perceptions of the contact investigation interview and determine potential factors associated with identifying TB contacts.

DESIGN: A total of 13 focus groups were conducted: 10 groups with previously smear-positive pulmonary TB patients born in the United States or Mexico, and three with program staff to discuss attitudes toward and perceptions of the contact investigation interview. Patients were recruited into separate groups by country of birth and number of contacts identified.

RESULTS: The data indicated that patients—even those who identified few contacts—overwhelmingly reported identifying contacts easily and willingly. Understanding the purpose of the contact investigation and seriousness of TB facilitated naming contacts, while miscommunication and misconceptions about TB hindered the process. Patients felt strongly about informing their contacts before the health department contacted them. Staff respondents reported that education and effective communication were critical during contact investigation interviewing.

CONCLUSION: Data indicated that patients, including those identifying few contacts, reported wanting to name their contacts. However, misconceptions may affect their understanding of who their contacts are, and hence the quantity and quality of the contacts identified. These findings underscore the need for effective communication and education.
No References
No Citations
No Supplementary Data
No Article Media
No Metrics

Keywords: contact investigation; focus groups; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Division of TB Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

Publication date: 2003-12-01

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

  • Editorial Board
  • Information for Authors
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease
  • Public Health Action
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more