What TB services are available at the Maricopa County Department of Public Health clinic?
Tuberculosis diagnostic services for active TB and latent TB infection TB skin testing, evaluation of symptoms, chest x-rays (digital), sputum and other specimens for smear, culture and sensitivities
Nurse case management for TB cases and suspects, and those with latent TB infection
Treatment of active TB and latent TB infection following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Thoracic Society's recommendations, including directly observed therapy (DOT)
DOT to ensure completion of therapy so patients will be cured of TB, and also to prevent drug resistance from developing
Monitoring for side effects of anti-TB medication(s), including laboratory tests
Monitoring for response to therapy, including laboratory tests
Referrals to appropriate health care providers for other medical problems
Residential facility for infectious TB patients, homeless and near homeless TB patients
How much does it cost for TB services at Maricopa County Department of Public Health?
There is no charge for any TB services for TB cases and suspects, their contacts, and high risk persons with latent TB infection.
What does it mean if I have a positive TB skin test?
A positive TB skin test indicates that you have been exposed to someone with TB. The next step is to have an evaluation for TB symptoms and a chest x-ray. If the symptom review and chest x-ray are negative, you have latent TB infection. With a normal immune system you have a 10% chance of developing TB disease; half of that risk or 5% is within the first 2 years after becoming infected. The other half of the risk is for the rest of your life.
If you are considered to be high risk for going on to TB disease, the health department will treat you with a medication that will prevent that from occurring. Persons with latent TB infection that are not high risk are referred to other health care providers. It is important to understand that if you have latent TB infection (positive TB skin test, normal chest x-ray, no symptoms of TB), you cannot give anyone else TB. You are NOT infectious.
What if I need a TB skin test for work or school, or as a volunteer at a hospital, nursing home, prison, etc.?
You may visit our TB clinic, located at 1645 E. Roosevelt Street in Phoenix, to receive a TB skin test with a Health Card. There is a charge for a Health Card, which is a release to attend work, school or to volunteer. The current charge is $65, cash, credit or debit card.
Why isn't a Health Card free of charge?
Only when there is a public health reason for a TB skin test (symptoms of TB, known contact to TB, etc.) is it provided at no charge.
What if one of my family members is diagnosed with TB?
Once a patient is referred to the Maricopa County Department of Public Health as a TB case or TB suspect, a nurse case manager is assigned to that patient. As part of the initial work with the patient, the nurse case manager will question the patient to learn the names and locating information of persons who have shared air with the patient, e.g., live or work with the patient, spend a lot of leisure time with the patient, etc. These people are called contacts. The nurse case manager will get in touch with the contacts and make arrangements for them to be evaluated, usually with a TB skin test, a symptom review, and if indicated, a chest x-ray, at the health department at no charge.