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No More TB Tests?

Nurses   (1,806 Views 21 Comments)
by adventure_rn adventure_rn, BSN (Member) Member Nurse

adventure_rn is a BSN and specializes in NICU, PICU.

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My hospital, a large well-renowned research institution, recently announced that clinical staff wouldn't have to do routine annual TB tests anymore. It is still required for new staff, and we will have to do an annual screening questionnaire with a follow-up test if we have TB symptoms.

Has anybody else ever experienced this? I never thought I'd see the day. At my last job, we had to do two PPDs and a quantiferon blood test every year. 🙄 Bright side, as nurses they let us 'read' our own PPDs after the two days so we didn't have to come in for a follow-up visit.

Edited by adventure_rn

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Rose_Queen is a BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in OR, education.

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We haven't done annual testing in years, other than areas that have been deemed high risk. The volume just isn't there to support routine testing of everyone.

We do still require the 2 step test at hire. Those who are later found to have experienced an exposure are also tested.

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dream'n has 26 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in UR/PA, Hematology/Oncology, Med Surg, Psych.

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Nope, my last couple of employers did not require yearly TB tests.  They only did them upon hire.

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11 Followers; 3,666 Posts; 27,172 Profile Views

No annual testing...

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NurseCard has 13 years experience as a ADN and specializes in Med/Surge, Psych, LTC, Home Health.

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Wow... my hospital still requires them yearly.   Now, I can't remember for sure, but I don't think that the home health agency that I worked for for quite some time, required them yearly.  Just upon hire.

I fortunately don't have to do them because I've had a positive quantiferon test, yay! 😂  So, I just have to answer a questionnaire regarding whether or not I've had any symptoms.

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River&MountainRN has 4 years experience as a ADN, RN and specializes in Primary Care, LTC, Private Duty.

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Only upon hire and we haven't even gotten the follow up questionnaires since then...which is a little scary, considering we're going into private homes to work around people who could be carrying anything

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adventure_rn is a BSN and specializes in NICU, PICU.

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Whaaat? I'm so surprised to hear how many hospitals don't routinely test. It's pretty amazing how widely policies and practices can vary from facility to facility. All of the rhetoric for performing less frequent tests makes perfect sense, though!

Thanks for sharing, guys!

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RNperdiem has 14 years experience as a RN.

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Routine testing annually was a big thing when I started as a nurse 20 years ago. TB rates were rising fast in part due to HIV/AIDS. What was once something rarely encountered was becomming more common. As a result there was more screening of staff. I need to look up what the incidence of TB is now. Last I read, it was in decline.

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klone has 13 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership.

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The last few facilities at which I've worked, it's only done on hire, and then annually in high risk areas only (ED, typically). Have to do the mask fit testing annually, though. That's an OSHA regulation.

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OldDude specializes in Pediatrics.

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At the local children's hospital I work prn with...they required all the employees to submit to a blood test; if negative, then no more TB testing required.

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NICU Guy has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in NICU.

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We take an annual questionnaire and Employee Health determines if we need to be tested. The questions are about exposure to and caring for TB patients in the past year.

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There's probably a risk assessment done based on the TB population of wherever you're located. In areas where it's still fairly endemic, they're likely going to continue testing. In towns where it's not, they've probably determined the risk of acquiring it is low, therefore no testing. (That's been my experience, anyways).

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