Effectiveness of Active Tuberculosis Screening Program for Adolescents and Young Adults with a Household Register in Mountain Townships, 2011–2012

DOI: 10.6525/TEB.20151027.31(20).002

Yun-Tsan Liao1*, Chien-Ban Hsu1, Chin-Hui Yang2, Chang-Hsun Chen1

2015 Vol.31 NO.20

Correspondence Author: Yun-Tsan Liao1*

  • 1Division of HIV/AIDS and TB, Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan
  • 2Division of Preparedness and Emerging Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan


Taiwanese people residing in remote areas, mostly in mountain townships, have been one of the target populations of Taiwan CDC’s chest X-ray (CXR) screening program for decades, but most adolescent and young adults who study away from their hometowns might miss the opportunity of the active screening program for tuberculosis (TB). Therefore, TaiwanCDC coordinates with educational institutions to implement the program, “active tuberculosis screening program for students with a household register in mountain townships“, to provide screening services for this specific vulnerable group.

The program aims to provide free chest X-rays examination and uses X-ray patrol truck. In 2011, the screening program focused on the students at high schools and community colleges with a household register in mountain townships, and was then expanded to college and university students in 2012.

The results revealed that detection rate of TB was 134.7 per 100,000 in 2011, which was about 6.6 folds of risks, comparing to the same age groups of the national population. The detection rate was 105.5 per 100,000 in 2012, or a crude relative risk of 6.1 times higher than the national incidence. Especially, detection rate (179.2 per 100,000) was the highest among senior high school students participating screening in 2012. We also found that, although the major activity areas of the target population were not in the mountain townships, detection rate of TB identified by the active screening services was still as high as people staying in mountain townships in Taiwan.

Informed by the results, we modify our prevention policies accordingly. In 2013, the target population was included as part of the ongoing project commissioned to the local health authorities for the implementation of infectious disease prevention by Taiwan CDC.