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Free Content Chapter 5: Health staff roles and responsibilities, recording and reporting and BCG vaccination [Official Statement. Guidance for National Tuberculosis Programmes on the management of tuberculosis in children. Chapter 5 in the series]

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A range of different care providers with varying levels of expertise and experience, including primary care staff, general clinicians, and paediatricians, may be involved in managing children with tuberculosis (TB). Clarifying the roles and responsibilities of health care staff for the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of TB in children is important. Roles and responsibilities depend on the relevant level of the health care system (primary, first referral and second referral). All providers of TB care should manage TB patients in conjunction with the National Tuberculosis Programme (NTP). A key aspect of the overall approach to managing children with TB is that they should always be included in the routine NTP recording and reporting system. This means notifying all identified TB cases in children to the NTP, registering them for treatment and recording their treatment outcome. The WHO Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) recommends BCG vaccination as soon as possible after birth in countries with a high TB prevalence. Although there have been several reports of disseminated BCG infection in HIV-infected individuals, BCG appears to be safe in the vast majority of cases. Therefore, in countries with a high TB prevalence (irrespective of the HIV prevalence), the benefits of BCG vaccination outweigh the risks and the WHO recommends a policy of routine BCG immunisation for all neonates.
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Keywords: BCG; TB; children; recording and reporting; responsibilities

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

Publication date: 01 February 2007

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  • 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

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