Tuberculosis screening among immigrants in The Netherlands: what is its contribution to public health?

Neth J Med. 2000 Feb;56(2):63-71. doi: 10.1016/s0300-2977(99)00118-7.


Understanding the epidemiology of tuberculosis in migrant communities and designing adequate and comprehensive control strategies is a major challenge facing public health authorities in many low-prevalence countries. In The Netherlands, screening immigrants from tuberculosis high prevalence countries has been conducted since 1966. In this paper, we review risk factors for tuberculosis in migrant populations, the public health importance of tuberculosis and the current screening policy in The Netherlands. TB treatment outcome in migrant populations and operational considerations that ought to be taken into account to optimize current screening practices are also reviewed. The article recommends the setting-up of an information system to evaluate the effectiveness of screening immigrants in The Netherlands, and adjustment of screening policies where needed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Emigration and Immigration*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening
  • Netherlands / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Public Health
  • Risk Factors
  • Tuberculosis / epidemiology*
  • Tuberculosis / prevention & control