China stresses tuberculosis prevention on educational campuses

BEIJING, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) — China has issued a new guideline on tuberculosis prevention and control on educational campuses to guard against transmission of the disease and protect the health of teachers and students.

Despite a decline in cases in recent years, China bears a heavy burden of tuberculosis because of its large population, said the guideline released by the National Health Commission and the Ministry of Education.

Students are one of the key groups prone to contracting the disease, the document noted, adding that the reported incidence among students stands at one-third of that among the country’s total population, which is generally trending downward.

The periods of March to April and September, which usually mark the beginning of spring and autumn semesters, respectively, are the peak seasons of reported tuberculosis cases among students, according to the guideline.

Given the risk, the guideline reinforced the responsibilities and tasks of education and health authorities for tuberculosis prevention and control on campuses and put forward a slew of detailed prevention measures for schools.

It called on schools to strengthen regular prevention and control work, list tuberculosis testing as mandatory in health examination of new arrivals and the teaching staff, and raise self-protection awareness.

The school environment should be improved, especially in places with gatherings, said the guideline. It also specified the handling of sporadic cases and stressed better emergency response capacities.

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