Nurses working in primary care will play an important role in the fight against TB in England, a Public Health England (PHE) spokesperson said.
High rates of TB in the UK over recent years have led PHE to launch a collaborative tuberculosis strategy document and consultation.
The Collaborative Tuberculosis Strategy for England 2014-2019 was launched to coincide with National TB Day on 24 March. The strategy document included improving access and early diagnosis, vaccination, screening, and surveillance and monitoring as key areas for inclusion in the clinical services and public health actions specification.Professor Ibrahim Abubakar, PHE's head of TB, said: 'Our recently launched consultation marks the beginning of our five year ambition to make a real difference in the fight against TB in England. Primary care nurses will have an important part in the fight against TB including supporting the early diagnosis of TB and the roll out of any screening. Details of these measures will be worked out in the response to the consultation.'
The strategy document sets out the reasons for action, the ways in which TB could be brought under control and how outcomes would be measured. It also proposed that control boards be set up to oversee the reduction in cases of TB.
The consultation opened on 24 March 2014 and will run for three months. The TB strategy document and consultation information can be found at: http://www.hpa.org.uk/Publications/InfectiousDiseases/Tuberculosis/1403TBstrategyconsultation2014.
The final TB strategy is expected to be published this summer to inform planning for 2015/16.