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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

  

TB Notes 1, 2005

No. 1, 2005

Dear Colleague:

The National TB Controllers Association is pleased to announce that it has a new Executive Director, Carol Pozsik, RN, MPH, former TB Controller for South Carolina. More information on Carol can be found in the Personnel Notes section of this issue.

In international news, on February 1, 2005, Dr. Martien Borgdorff was appointed the new director of the KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation. He succeeds Dr. Jaap Broekmans, who served as the director of the organization for over 17 years. Dr. Borgdorff is an internationally recognized TB expert and epidemiologist who is well known to many in DTBE through our international work. Dr. Borgdorff visited DTBE in Atlanta in 2003 and provided in-depth technical consultation for various genotyping analyses.

The Advisory Council for the Elimination of Tuberculosis (ACET) met on February 16 and 17 in Atlanta. We started off with Center and Division updates and reports, which included staffing and budget updates from Dr. Janet Collins, acting Director for the National Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention (NCHSTP). Dr. Collins reported that Congress had provided additional funding for U.S. TB control, which allowed restoration of support to programs that had been cut. She also reminded us that the BOTUSA Project in Botswana has just celebrated its tenth anniversary. On March 1, BOTUSA staff held an anniversary conference in Botswana to commemorate this special event. After these updates, ACET members heard a number of presentations on global TB. Among these were Dr. Ann Ginsberg’s encouraging report on the work of the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development; she described several studies of moxifloxacin, which may shorten treatment by 2 months. Dr. Dolly Katz of DTBE gave an update on the TB Epidemiologic Studies Consortium (TBESC) pilot study on TB in foreign-born persons. She concluded from the pilot study results that foreign-born persons will participate in the study, will answer sensitive questions, and can provide programmatically relevant information.

The next day, we heard updates on infection control issues. Dr. Lisa Panlilio described the respiratory protection stakeholders’ meeting held in Atlanta on November 30 and December 1, 2004. The meeting was intended as an information-gathering foundation for future activities. Several ACET members expressed concern that the meeting’s productivity had been lessened by the divergent positions of two groups, the representatives of respirator manufacturers and the hospital infection control professionals. Dr. Michael Iademarco followed with a status report on the revised infection control guidelines. He and Lauren Lambert and Dr. Paul Jensen are reviewing over 2,000 comments received in response to the Federal Register announcement. Based on substantial external input, CDC is near consensus on fit testing and frequency of respirator use for health care workers.

We observed World TB Day with a number of activities. On March 24, DTBE joined the Metropolitan Chicago Tuberculosis Coalition in a World TB Day observance. The theme of the event was “TB: Educate to Eliminate.” Representing DTBE on the program was Dr. Wanda Walton, Chief, Communications, Education, and Behavioral Studies Branch. In connection with World TB Day, the March 18 issue of CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) contains three pieces on tuberculosis. These include a front-page box entitled “World TB Day, March 24, 2005” as well as two reports, “Congenital Pulmonary Tuberculosis Associated with Maternal Cerebral Tuberculosis — Florida, 2002, “ and “Trends in Tuberculosis — United States, 2004.” The trends report presents provisional TB case and rate data reported for 2004 and discusses CDC’s efforts in addressing the high TB rates among foreign-born persons and blacks in the United States. As it has for the last 2 years, DTBE’s surveillance team has published these provisional data and trends less than 3 months after the end of the reporting period. Other World TB Day activities included producing and distributing updated materials for use in local efforts, including a variety of World TB Day posters, a brochure, and several fact sheets. DTBE has added a 2005 World TB Day section to its website. In addition, the CDC website home page and the CDC en Espanol home page are featuring a World TB Day "Spotlight" during the weeks of March 14 and 21. Finally, DTBE and the National Prevention Information Network (NPIN) created a 2005 World TB Day section on the NPIN webpage containing information about World TB Day and various TB-related materials.

If you have not already done so, please mark your calendars for this year’s National TB Controllers Workshop. It is being held in Atlanta on June 28-30, 2005, at the J.W. Marriott Lenox Hotel. The Workshop will be preceded by related sessions on Sunday and Monday, June 26 and 27. The theme is “Can You Hear Me Now? Let’s Talk TB,” and will focus on communication, education, training, and media relations. I hope to see you there!

Kenneth G. Castro, MD

 


Released October 2008
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention
Division of Tuberculosis Elimination - http://www.cdc.gov/tb

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