UMMC Policy and Procedure Manual E-AA-GEN-GEN-PO-00016
Subject: Tuberculosis (TB) Screening for Students
Old Title: Student Tuberculosis (TB) Testing
Revised Date: 5/4/2021 Effective Date: 9/1/2014
Prepared By:
Dorothy R. Singleton
Approved By:
Ralph H. Didlake

PURPOSE: To establish effective TB screening for student applicants.

POLICY:  For the purposes of this policy, students are defined as individuals enrolled with UMMC schools and students enrolled with the University of Mississippi’s School of Pharmacy. Excluded from this definition are students in the following distance education programs with no clinical or research components requiring the physical presence of students on any UMMC campus: School of Dentistry – Advanced Standing Dental Hygiene; School of Graduate Studies in the Health Sciences – Biochemistry Certificate; School of Health Related Professions – Advanced Standing Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science MLT-MLS, Advanced Standing Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences, Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences, Bachelor of Science in Health Systems Administration, Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Health Informatics, Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Leadership and Management; John D. Bower School of Population Health – Executive Master of Science in Population Health Management, Master of Science in Population Health Science, Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Analytics, Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Population Health Science.

Students accepted into all other UMMC academic programs will provide proof of TB testing within three (3) months prior to the date of school entry. Date of school entry for Pharmacy students is considered to be the start of the P1 year. TB screening for Pharmacy students is managed according to the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy protocol.

Individuals for whom testing is medically contraindicated will provide sufficient evidence from a qualified medical provider to document their TB status. Cases in which applicants test positive for TB or who have special circumstances regarding their TB status will be reviewed by the medical director of student employee health. Further evaluation may be required. 

Background: The American College Health Association recommends that all incoming students should be screened for risk factors for tuberculosis (TB) and those with risk factors and all international applicants should undergo Mantoux or interferon gamma release assay testing. The CDC recommends that all students in a health care setting should undergo testing.

A two-step TB Skin test or a TB Interferon-Gamma Release Assay (IGRA) blood test is required for baseline TB screening of all students. The approved IGRA tests are QuantiFERON-TB Gold and T-Spot tests. Students who choose to screen using a TB skin test must submit documentation of a two-step TB skin test performed within 90 days (3 months) prior to school entry. The second dose of the two-step TB test must be placed within 28 days of the initial TB skin test. If the TB skin or the IGRA test is positive, a chest x-ray report must also be submitted. Students residing in the United States who have been undergoing annual TB skin test screening prior to enrollment may submit two or more consecutive annual reports of negative TB skin tests, one of which must have been done within three months of school enrollment, in lieu of the two-step TB skin test.

Students with a previously positive TB skin test or students with a history of immunization with BCG should submit an IGRA test report obtained within 90 days (3 months) of school entry. Students who have been treated for latent TB infection in the past are required to complete a pulmonary history form and submit a copy of the treatment record and chest X-ray report.

International students are required to submit an IGRA test and chest X-ray reports, both performed in the United States within 45 days of school enrollment.

SCOPE: All UMMC schools               

PROCEDURES: None applicable

REFERENCES:

Tuberculosis (TB). [Internet]. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [Updated 2013 September 6; cited 2014 March 12]. Available from http://www.cdc.gov/tb/topic/testing/.

Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Guidelines for Preventing the Transmission of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Health-Care Settings. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.  2005; 54(RR-17): 1-141.

American College Health Association. ACHA Guidelines: Tuberculosis Screening and Targeted Testing of College and University Students. 2012 April [cited 2014 March 12]. Available from https://www.acha.org/documents/resources/guidelines/ACHA_Tuberculosis_Screening_May2020.pdf

IHL Board of Trustees Policies & Bylaws. http://www.mississippi.edu/board/downloads/policiesandbylaws.pdf:100