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Tuberculosis Control Program

Program Focus:

Prevent the spread of tuberculosis in Imperial County, and assure adequate treatment for individuals with active tuberculosis.

Program Activities:

  • Test people for TB infection by giving a (PPD) TB skin test.
  • Chest x-ray people with a positive (PPD) skin test.
  1. If x-ray shows no sign of active TB offer preventive medication.
  2. If x-ray suggests active TB refer to TB Physician for evaluation.
  • Provide case management on active TB cases until completion of treatment.
  • Monitor patients taking TB medications through Directly Observed Therapy (DOT).
  • Investigate all contacts of persons with active TB, evaluate and offer treatment, and follow-up to prevent the development of active TB.

Active TB disease:

Symptoms of Active Tuberculosis may include a constant cough that lasts two or more weeks (cough may produce phlegm or blood), chest pain, weakness, loss of appetite, weight loss, fever, and night sweats. A person with active TB disease is contagious and can infect other people by droplets sprayed into the air especially when they cough or sneeze.

TB Infection:

When a person has been exposed to someone with active TB disease and breathes in the TB germ from droplets in the air, that person may become infected with the TB germ. In most cases, people can contain the infection and not become ill with active TB disease. A person with TB infection only (a positive TB skin test and a normal chest x-ray) is not sick, and cannot pass the TB germ to others. Medication is available to prevent the infection from developing into active TB. Persons with a positive TB skin test should check with their health care provider or medical staff at the Public Health Department to see whether or not they should take preventive medication.

Anyone can develop TB, but some people are at higher risk, those at higher risk include:

  • People who share the same breathing space with an active TB disease case. (Such as family members, friends, and coworkers)
  • Homeless people
  • Foreign-born people from countries where a lot of people have TB
  • Nursing home residents
  • Prisoners
  • Alcoholics and intravenous drug users
  • People with medical condition such as diabetes (especially when glucose is uncontrolled), or who take immune-suppressing drugs after transplants, and underweight
  • People with HIV infection (the virus that causes AIDS)

For additional information, please consult your health care provider, or please contact the Imperial County Public Health TB Control Department at (442) 265-1415.

Contact Information:

Jaspreet Sidhu, RN, BSN
Program Supervisor
Imperial County Public Health Department
935 Broadway, El Centro, 92243
Phone: (442) 265-1423
Fax: (442) 265-1474