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Tuberculosis: Disease Control

Volume 498: debated on Monday 26 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what the cost to his Department of (a) implementing and (b) managing its pre-entry screening programme for tuberculosis has been since the programme’s inception; (295001)

(2) what estimate he has made of the average cost to each applicant of undertaking the pre-entry screening programme for tuberculosis;

(3) whether he plans to extend the pre-screening programme for tuberculosis to migrants from more countries;

(4) what evaluation of the effectiveness of his Department’s pre-entry screening programme for tuberculosis has been undertaken.

The pre-entry TB screening pilot programme administered on behalf of the UK Border Agency by the International Organisation for Migration covers 15 countries, and complements the system of on-entry checks by port medical inspectors at major UK ports. The Home Office, with a contribution from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, met the start-up costs of $1,803,580 US. The scheme is now self-financing, applicants paying a fee of between $50 and $77 US (up to £50). The Department of Health and Health Protection Agency have undertaken preliminary assessments, and a final evaluation is now under way. Following this review decisions will be taken on the future of the programme.