POSTED: 3:01 p.m. HST, Apr 11, 2013
LAST UPDATED: 3:04 p.m. HST, Apr 11, 2013
The state announced this afternoon it is temporarily suspending mandated tubereculosis clearance requirements for school personnel, students, food handlers, and workers in health care, domiciliary care, daycare, and residential care facilities in wake of a nationwide shortage of the TB testing solution.
Effective today, the state Department of Health announced in a press release, it will not restrict attendance at work or school without TB clearance.
“With limited supplies of testing solution available due to nationwide production delays that began late last year, we anticipate people may have some difficulty getting tested for TB at this time,” said Dr. Richard Brostrom, TB Control Branch Chief. “TB clearance requirements will be suspended until further notice, and our state TB clinics will be limiting testing to specific high-risk groups to prioritize and extend current supplies.”
A shortage of Tubersol® and Aplisol® purified protein derivative (PPD) solution, is forcing the health department to limit TB testing at state clinics to only the following high-risk groups:
>> Thoe showing signs and symptoms of active TB.
>> Those exposed to an infectious case.
>> High-risk immigrants referred from the Honolulu Quarantine Station.
>> Those with immunodeficiencies.
>> Anyone who requires TB screening due to medical treatment.
The health department is advising all others who need TB clearance to contact their private health care provider or health center.
Manufacturers of the PPD have been experiencing delays in production since November 2012, the state said.Officials expect the temporary suspension may last for up to 120 days.
For more information on tuberculosis or TB testing, call the Hawaii TB Control Program at (808) 832-5731 or go to www.hawaii.gov/health/tb<http://www.hawaii.gov/health/tb>.