Latent Tuberculosis is a condition where someone has been infected by Tuberculosis but does not have active disease. A person with latent Tuberculosis is not unwell nor infectious to others. Sometimes latent Tuberculosis can activate. This is a rare event. If it does occur, it usually happens within the first 12 months of being infected, or if someone becomes immunocompromised.
Latent Tuberculosis is treatable, but treatment can have side effects and for many people treatment is not indicated. Children with latent Tuberculosis may be appropriate for treatment. Former refugees are unable to join the resettlement programme if they have active Tuberculosis but some may have latent Tuberculosis.
In Mangere former refugees are tested for the presence of latent Tuberculosis. Those who are found to have latent Tuberculosis are assessed for appropriateness of treatment. An infectious disease specialist decides on the course of treatment and length of treatment. Referrals and scripts from Mangere for treatment are forwarded on to the former refugee’s GP to activate.
For children being treated for latent TB
If a child is documented as having latent TB indicated for treatment, please refer the child to pediatric outpatients where they will be followed up for treatment initiation and oversight. Please include a copy of the script provided by Mangere in the referral. If the child is unwell of coughing at the time of your consult, please refer to urgently to paediatrics.