How can we cost-effectively screen for tuberculosis in Canada’s foreign-born population?

A radiologist looks at an X-ray

TB is a major global health problem and one of the world’s deadliest diseases. In Canada, great advancements have been made towards TB treatment and prevention but progress has stalled due to persistently high TB rates in high-risk populations.  One strategy to reduce TB rates in BC is to scale-up TB screening programs within known high-risk populations, such as foreign-born individuals. However, this would be costly and may divert services from other TB screening activities and public health programs.

To ensure efficient use of resources and targeted screening and treatment, a more granular understanding of this particular high-risk group is needed, which is the objective of this study. A research team led by Dr. James Johnston, in collaboration with colleagues from the BC Centre for Disease Control, University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health, aims to identify populations at highest risk for TB in an effort to develop cost-effective TB screening and prevention strategies. 

PopData will link information from the BC Ministry of Health, the BC Cancer Agency, the BC Vital Statistics Agency, the BC Centre for Disease Control, the BC Provincial Renal Agency and Citizenship and Immigration Canada for the project.