HIV-positive patients and staff in health units face daily exposure to TB. The risk of exposure is greatest in adult medical wards and TB wards where there are many PTB cases. Often the wards are crowded and badly ventilated.We do not yet know the size of this risk.
Training of health care workers about the importance of infection control measures should assist in the implementation of control activities. Prompt diagnosis and treatment of patients with sputum smear-positive PTB helps to reduce exposure to TB. Prompt outpatient diagnosis and treatment of PTB patients avoids hospital admission.This is an advantage in decreasing exposure to TB in hospital wards. In some NTPs there is a move away from an inpatient intensive phase towards outpatient management.
Known HIV-positive health workers should not work with PTB patients. They should therefore not work in TB wards or adult medical wards.
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