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עמוד בית
Sun, 14.04.24

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January 2015
Zohar Mor MD MPH MPH, Orly Weinstein MD MHA, Dini Tischler-Aurkin MD MPA, Alex Leventhal MD MPH MPA, Alon Yaniv and Itamar Grotto MD PhD MPH

Background: Since 2006 more than 60,000 migrants arrived in Israel from the Horn of Africa (HoA: Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia). They were detained in prison and screened for tuberculosis (TB) by means of an interview and chest X-ray (CXR).

Objectives: To evaluate the yield of this screening process.

Methods: This cross-sectional study evaluated the validity of CXR in a random sample of 1087 of the 5335 HoA migrants (20.4%) who arrived in 2009, and assessed its related costs.

Results: Sixty-two migrants (5.7%) had CXRs with TB-suspicious findings, and 11 of them were finally diagnosed with TB (17.7% of all TB-suspicious CXRs). TB point-prevalence was 1000 cases per 100,000 migrants (1.0%). As no additional TB cases were diagnosed on arrival, CXR sensitivity, specificity and positive predictive value were 100%, 96.1% and 17.7%, respectively. The interview did not contribute to the detection of migrants with TB. Direct costs related to the detection of single TB cases in prison was 17,970 shekels (US$ 4585), lower than the treating cost of 28,745 shekels ($ 7335). During 2008–2010, 88 HoA migrants who had been screened at the prison after crossing the border were later diagnosed with TB in the community. The average annual TB incidence was 132 cases/100,000 migrants. We traced 56 (63.6%) of the CXRs that were performed during detention. Of those, 41 (73.2%) were unremarkable, 8 (14.2%) were TB suspicious and 7 (12.5%) had non-TB-related abnormalities.

Conclusions: CXR-based screening is a valid and cost-saving tool for screening  HoA migrants for TB; the interview has significant limitations. 

May 2006
H. Joffe, E. Bamberger, S. Nurkin, E. Kedem, Z. Kra-Oz, S. Pollack and I. Srugo

Background: The co-morbidity of human immunodeficiency virus and other sexually transmitted diseases in Israel has not been established. 

Objectives: To compare the prevalence of STDs [1]among HIV[2]-positive patients to HIV-negative patients visiting an STD clinic in northern Israel. 

Methods: Between December 2000 and December 2001, 176 HIV-positive individuals (53% males) were screened and compared to 200 HIV-seronegative individuals (76% males). Demographics, symptomatology and risk factors were obtained via questionnaire. First-void urine samples were tested for the detection of Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Serum was tested for type-specific herpes simplex virus-2, hepatitis B and syphilis. 

Results: Relative to the seronegative STD patients, HIV-positive patients exhibited significantly greater risk-reducing sexual behaviors such as consistent condom use [29/86 (33.7%) vs. 16/187 (8.6%), P < 0.001], and abstinence in the previous 6 months [43/125 (34%) vs. 7/185 (3.8%), P < 0.001]. Nevertheless, STD prevalence was higher among HIV-positive than HIV-negative patients (79.5% vs. 37.5%, P < 0.001). HSV[3]-2, syphilis and HBV[4] were more common among HIV-positive than HIV-negative patients [120/175 (68.8%)] vs. 18/200 (9%), P < 0.001)], [43/161 (26.7%) vs. 0%, P < 0.001)], [13/171 (7.6%) vs. 3/200 (1.5%), P < 0.01)], respectively. In contrast, Chlamydia and gonorrhea were more commonly found in HIV-negative patients than HIV-positive patients [3/176 (1.7%) vs.13/200 (6.5%), P < 0.05] vs. [0% vs.5/200 (2.5%), P < 0.05], respectively. 

Conclusion: Despite the low risk sexual behavior of Israeli HIV patients, they had a high prevalence of chronic STDs (e.g., HSV-2, HBV and syphilis). The lower prevalence of Chlamydia and gonorrhea among HIV-immunosuppressed patients may be attributed to routine antibiotic prophylaxis against opportunistic infections. Nevertheless, as advocated by international health organizations, it appears prudent to recommend the routine screening of these asymptomatic HIV-positive patients for STD pathogens. 


 




[1] STD = sexually transmitted diseases

[2] HIV = human immunodeficiency virus

[3] HSV = herpes simplex virus

[4] HBV = hepatitis B virus


September 2000
Jacob Urkin, MD and Manuel Katz, MD
June 2000
Jacob Urkin MD, Sheila S. Warshawsky MSc and Joseph Press MD

Background: In Israel the pediatric emergency room functions as an urgent primary care clinic in addition to dealing with life-threatening situations. Due to health insurance stipulations, most patients come to the PER with a referral from the community clinic. The relationship between the referring physician’s expectations and the subsequent management of the referred patient in the PER is not well defined.

Objectives: To evaluate the relationship between the expectations of the primary care physician and the management of referred patients in the PER, assess the type of information provided by the referring physician, and examine the effect of additional information obtained from the referring physician on patient management in the PER.

Methods: We reviewed the records of patients presenting at the PER with referrals from primary care physicians as well as additional information obtained by telephone interviews with the referring physicians.     

Results: The expectations of the referring physicians were not fully documented in the referral form. The PER responded to the patient as if the PER was the initial contact. There was no significant difference in the response of PER physicians with or without additional information from the referring physicians.

Conclusions: The PER acts as an independent unit with no obligation to satisfy the expectations of the referring physicians. The relationship between the PER and the referring physicians needs to be clarified. Guidelines and structured PER referral forms should be implemented in all primary care clinics to improve patient management and communication between health providers. 

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PER= Pediatric Emergency Room

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