15.1 Initial assessment

New staff entering a TB facility and who will be in contact with potentially contagious patients and/or clinical laboratory specimens must undergo baseline assessment:
– Determine the BCG immunization status (BCG scar check);
– Perform a baseline chest X-ray;
– Perform a baseline tuberculin skin test (TST);
– HIV testing is strongly recommended.

In addition, the following information should be provided:
M. tuberculosis occupational transmission;
– TB infection control measures and good practices for preventing transmission;
– Higher risk of active TB in immunocompromised (mainly HIV-infected, diabetics, pregnant women);
– Suggestive symptoms of TB.

Immunocompromised health staff should not work in settings where the risk of exposure to the bacillus is high (Section 14.2.3).

Pregnant women should not work in TB facilities, or at least should not be exposed to potentially contagious patients.