These guidelines were initiated by and worked out in cooperation with physicians of the public health service. Numerous publications and relevant legal regulations, particularly the Federal Law against Epidemics were taken into consideration. The responsibilities of the public health service in the fight against tuberculosis includes case finding, detection of the routes of infection and prevention of transmission. Within the scope of these duties contacts of index cases are traced after the notifications were received. The suspects of tuberculosis are examined considering their risk of infection and disease. While doing so the detection of the source of infection has priority. In general tuberculin tests, X-rays and bacteriology are available for public health services, in order to stick to the duties. The general procedures are explained and recommendations for intervals of investigations are given. Nevertheless there is leeway for decisions in isolated cases, but divergent steps should be documented with care. Specific features in the examination of contacts in institutions of communities and in companies are mentioned just as organizing and legal aspects. Requirements of coercive measures are described. Finally a short note is given on perspectives of molecular techniques on measures of the public health services.