Public health officials need to develop guidelines for detecting and treating multi-drug resistant tuberculosis in migrants, according to a review published in Clinical Microbiology and Infection.

Friedland and colleagues presented a series of detailed recommendations for addressing the problem of MDR-TB among migrants. These included:

  • changing health care policy so migrants can use available TB screening, diagnosis and treatment options;
  • providing better social and financial support to migrants;
  • developing consistent screening methods across Europe;
  • developing evidence-based guidelines for preventing and treating MDR-TB; and
  • conducting new research aimed at developing a diagnostic test for latent MDR-TB and at predicting the risk for disease reactivation.

Researchers noted that, although these strategies may be expensive, “screening cannot be meaningful without linkage to high-quality care, which ultimately is necessary to reduce migrant mortality and morbidity, as well as transmission to the wider population.”