Healthwatch Evaluation of Patient Experience: Latent Tuberculosis (LTBI) in Newham March 2017Download (PDF 286KB)
Summary of report content
In October 2016, Newham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) commissioned Healthwatch Newham to learn about the patient experience and feedback on the Latent Tuberculosis Infection screening service (LTBI) in Newham, in order to identify the key factors that influence the uptake of screening and understand why patients decline the LTBI test. Healthwatch Newham spoke to 60 patients from 6 GP practices
Feedback from patients suggests that the client’s level of engagement with their GP, and their awareness of Tuberculosis or Latent Tuberculosis, tends to have an impact on their uptake of the test. Patients who have accepted the test suggest that their GP directly offers the test, part of a general check-up, explains the nature of Latent TB and the benefit of having the test, and provides reassurance to the patient. These act as the main reason for take-up.
Patients who have declined the test, usually do so because they think it is not relevant or not helpful as they think that they do not meet the eligibility criteria that are sent to them by their GP via a text message or a letter (eg having entered the UK in the past 5 years). Another reason is that they have already had the test in the past as an entry requirement to the UK.
Overall, patients suggest that the best way to encourage people to take the test is by offering it as part of a general check-up, and raising awareness of TB or Latent TB, by direct contact, the benefits of testing for Latent TB, the risks associated of catching TB, and the availability and feasibility of treatment.
There were four recommendations about how to improve take up of the latent TB screening.