A migrant worker presents to the ED with complaints of a cough for 2 weeks, low-grade fever, and night sweats. The doctor orders blood work and a chest x-ray. A single nodule is noted in the left lower lung field on x-ray and the interferon-gamma release assay (IGRA) blood test comes back positive for tuberculosis. The nurse knows that along with initiation of treatment for tuberculosis, which of the following is required?

Reporting of communicable diseases (including tuberculosis) to the community health department is required.

Explanation

•The Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization require reporting of cases of highly infectious communicable diseases like tuberculosis. This reporting system allows these organizations to track and monitor diseases in an attempt to prevent the spread of these diseases in at-risk populations. The reporting of these communicable diseases is important in preventing uncontrollable transmission worldwide (pandemic). Communicable diseases being reported to these organizations allows monitoring of these illnesses to reduce and eliminate the spread of disease.

Incorrect options:

•Treatment of known cases of tuberculosis lasts for a minimum of 6 months, so these patients are not placed in contact isolation for the duration of treatment.

•Close monitoring and follow-up will be done throughout treatment to ensure compliance with the medication regimen.

•Family members and people who have been exposed to tuberculosis will often be given short-term prophylactic antibiotic treatment to prevent the development of the disease.

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