Investigation of contacts of patients with active pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) is an important epidemiological tool in TB control. Unfortunately, due to budgetary and resource constraints, many health departments struggle to fulfill their responsibility of TB control through contact investigation. The broad purpose of this project, proposed by investigators at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the State of Alabama Department of Public Health, is to use a behaviorally focused education that has been proven effective to enhance the accuracy and efficiency of the contact investigation process. The behaviorally focused intervention will focus on enabling public health workers to understand and implement a recently published model of TB transmission. The efficacy of this TB transmission model has been demonstrated by using computer algorithms; however, we endeavor to measure the clinical effectiveness of the TB contact priority model in field application. To achieve this goal, the following specific aims will be accomplished: 1) Enhance the current State of Alabama Department of Public Health contact investigation protocols and computer modules by using the statistically validated models of TB transmission; 2) Modify and re-implement an effective behaviorally focused education intervention to enable TB field workers to understand and implement the TB contact priority model and use the computer modules; 3) Conduct a formal evaluation of the a) behaviorally focused education intervention, b) usefulness of the newly developed computer modules, and c) the clinical effectiveness of the field implementation of the TB contact priority model; and 4) Disseminate and share results with other TB control programs seeking to improve contact investigation and provide more efficient TB disease control. ? ?
|Pisu, Maria; Gerald, Joe; Shamiyeh, James E et al. (2009) Targeted tuberculosis contact investigation saves money without sacrificing health. J Public Health Manag Pract 15:319-27|