Tuberculosis (TB) is one of the problematic diseases that have troubled humanity for decades. The prevalence of the condition is rather low among the western nations, but it is still a major cause of death in the continents of Africa and Asia. During an outbreak, nurses conduct epidemiological analysis to determine the extent of the condition as well as the possible solutions. The outbreak of TB in Adams County is an odd occurrence since the location of the county does not lie among the danger zones. However, an epidemiological analysis of the three cases is necessary to limit the spread of the disease and limit the impacts of the infection among the affected (Schlosberg, 2011). One of the best ways of conducting an outbreak analysis is to have a face-to-face communication with the affected people. The role of the nurse is to determine the how, when, who and what part of the infection process. As such, the nurse should formulate questions that provide answers to the four mentioned aspects of the disease for effective evaluation.
The first question that a nurse should ask the patients is on the appearance of the first symptoms. Knowing when the first symptoms occurred helps the health department to figure out the incubation period of the bacterial. TB is a bacterial infection and the incubation period of the infections varies depending on the location and the health condition of the individual. Understanding the incubation period helps determine when the bacterium was acquired and at which place (Schlosberg, 2011). In the Adams county case, the patients are immigrants. Therefore, it is essential to determine where the infection occurred to put the necessary control mechanisms. Another vital question is about the relationship that the patients have with the rest of the people. The nature of relationships helps determine the extent at which the disease has spread. The health industry can only achieve ideal control of the spread if they understand the possible infected people (Schlosberg, 2011). Thirdly, the nurse should ask the patient’s personal questions such as the age, the health status of the patients in relation to HIV, and the places of origin. The personal information helps to determine the cause of the infection. The three sets of questions will help determine the how, what, when and who part of the outbreak.
Educating the public and the patients on various aspects related to TB can help reduce the spread and the effects of the disease within a locality. First, the healthcare provider must teach patients on ways to avoid infecting the people around them as well as ways to avoid re-infection on their part. People who have a history of TB are always at risk of an infection in case of exposure. As such, the practitioner must enlighten the patients on the importance of taking various drugs that help to deal with multiple infections (Schlosberg, 2011). Additionally, the practitioner should inform the patients on the importance of completing the prescribed medication to avoid re-occurrence of the infection. The families and the workmates must be educated on how to treat those infected with the bacterial. TB is a despised condition that is associated with a lot of negativity. As such, people suffering from the condition endure a lot of discrimination from the society, thus affecting their healing process (Schlosberg, 2011). Therefore, it is important for the practitioner to inform the family members and the workmates of the risk factors and the infection process of the disease.
Schlossberg, D. (2011). Tuberculosis and nontuberculous mycobacterial infections. Washington, D.C: ASM Press.