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TB Patients in Marginalised Groups Need Social Support for Effective Medical Treatment

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* 48 per cent were admitted to hospital during their treatment, with hospital admissions for homeless people being longer and costing two and a half times more than admissions for non-homeless people.

* People were most likely to miss appointments if they had previously had TB or misused drugs or alcohol.

* A third of the 81 patients tested for HIV were positive.

"Our study shows that greater emphasis is needed on developing a social model of care, which includes TB link workers to enable access to housing and allied support services and promote partnership working with the statutory and voluntary sectors" concludes Dr Craig.

"Thats why The City University has developed a course to help professionals who deal with TB patients to work together in an effective and co-ordinated way.

"Meanwhile, the challenge for commissioners of TB services will be to link the evidence for social care with health policy and practice in order to re-configure services with an emphasis on social support and prevention."


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