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Latino Immigrants' Knowledge of Tuberculosis


  • Rita L. Ailinger, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. Rachel Armstrong, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. Nga Nguyen, Arlington County Public Health Division, Arlington, Virginia. Howard Lasus, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia.

Rita L. Ailinger, MS: 3C4, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 22030-4444. E-mail:


Abstract  This study examined tuberculosis (TB) knowledge in Latino immigrants receiving latent TB infection (LTBI) therapy. The study design was descriptive correlational. Knowledge was measured using the LTBI Knowledge Instrument. The convenience sample included 82 Latino immigrants primarily from Central America and Bolivia who attended a public health clinic for their LTBI therapy. The mean TB knowledge score was 66%. Knowledge scores were correlated with years of education, but not with age or number of years in the United States. More than 80% of study participants correctly answered questions about the importance of keeping monthly appointments and how Isoniazid works to eradicate TB germs in the human body. Questions that pertained to the contagiousness of active TB and how the disease spreads received the most incorrect responses. Public health nursing interventions should focus on increasing Latino immigrants' knowledge of TB, both in public health clinics and in the community.