Tuberculosis (TB) is a communicable, potentially deadly disease that usually affects the lungs but can attack other parts of the body as well. It is spread when a person with an active case of TB breathes out the disease-causing bacteria, which are then inhaled by another person. TB is treatable and usually curable, although new drug-resistant strains are appearing that are very difficult to treat. It is vital that TB patients faithfully follow their treatment regimen and take all medications as directed, for as long as directed, or the disease can recur in a drug-resistant form.
The Jackson-Madison County Regional Health Department offers free treatment for individuals with TB through the Tennessee TB Elimination Program. Treatments include chest x-rays, medications, labs, and follow-up services. The goal of the Tennessee TB Elimination Program is to eradicate TB in Tennessee. The TB case rate for Tennessee in 2014 was 2.3 for every 100,000 people. The Health Department staff work diligently to lower our cases of active TB as a means to keep residents of Madison County healthy. In 2014, the case rate for Madison County was 1.0.
The Health Department no longer provides TB skin test for employment purposes or for entrance to colleges/universities. Our goal is to target high risk populations such as: the homeless, persons born in other countries where TB is prevalent, prisoners, alcohol and intravenous drug users, people with medical conditions such as diabetes and certain types of cancer, and people with HIV infection (the virus that causes AIDS). In order to accomplish this goal, health care providers must:
- Quickly diagnose and treat tuberculosis disease
- Promptly investigate all suspected exposures to each and every case of TB
- Strongly encourage preventive treatment for people who are at risk of developing TB disease
The Jackson-Madison County Regional Health Department provides TB testing by appointment only. For an appointment, please call 731-927-8564.
For other information regarding TB, please contact our staff