This series of free, interactive modules, developed by APHL in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, promotes competency, quality and safety in common mycobacteriology testing practices. Designed for laboratorians at all levels of experience, each module in the series is complimented by references and resources. Modules are available in PDF format for use in laboratory training programs.
Users are encouraged to view the modules as frequently as needed. Additional modules are now in development. Please check this site frequently for new content.
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Run time: 15 minutesThis module presents an overview of TB disease, testing algorithm, basic epidemiology, global and national burdens, transmission, clinical presentation and treatment.
Run time: 24 minutesThis module covers safe work practices related to procedures involved in mycobacteriology testing.
Laboratory Biosafety: Work practices for Mycobacterium tuberculosis - PDF versionDisinfecting the work spaceHow to perform a Fit TestMMWR - Guidelines for BiosafetyTime (in minutes) to remove aerosols from the laboratory
Run time: 38 minutesThis modules discussed pre-analytic factors contributing to specimen quality that impact patient diagnosis and treatment. The content compares collection, storage and transport of different specimen types (e.g., respiratory and non-respiratory) and explains the principles of specimen processing.
Specimen Collection, Transport, Handling and Processing - PDF version2009 TB Assessment ToolExample Brochure on Transporting Infectious SubstancesExamples of Performance IndicatorsMMWR - Guidelines on the Use of Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests for Diagnosis of TuberculosisNomogramSputum Collection Guidelines
Run time: 33 minutesThis modules discusses principles of AFB staining techniques, fluorescence microscopy, and accurate identification and grading of AFB in smears.
AFB Smear Microscopy - PDF versionWet Lab for AFB Smear Microscopy
Run time: 10 minutesThis module offers a basic introduction to the practices and principles for mycobacterial culture, identification of mycobacteria, and growth-based drug susceptibility testing.
Run time: 32 minutesThis module describes the importance of mycobacterial culture, best practices for using solid and liquid media, results reporting and addressing common issues such as contamination.
Run time: 32 minutesThis module discusses classical and emerging methods for identification of mycobacteria, including advantages, limitations, and the importance of accurate and quality results.
Run time: 47 minutesThis module provides background on drug resistance and culture-based drug susceptibility testing methods. It covers turnaround times and results reporting, discordant results, and practices to ensure quality.
APHL sincerely thanks all who contributed their time and subject matter expertise to develop and produce these courses.
Julie Tans-KerstenWisconsin State Lab of HygieneAngela StarksChief, Laboratory Branch, CDC/DTBEWilliam MurtaughSpecialist, TB Program, APHLKelly WroblewskiDirector, Infectious Disease Programs, APHL
Dave WarshauerWisconsin State Lab of HygieneMichael PentellaMassachusetts William A. Hinton State Laboratory InstituteJane VoylesArkansas State Public Health LaboratoryRoy Tu’uaMissouri State Public Health LaboratoryKen Jost Jr.Texas Department of State Health ServicesJafar RazeqMaryland Department of HealthAlla OstashWashington State Public Health LaboratoriesRobin ConnellyGeorgia Public Health LaboratoryMary DeMartinoMassachusetts William A. Hinton State Laboratory InstituteTracy StilesMassachusetts William A. Hinton State Laboratory InstituteTracy DaltonLaboratory Capacity Team, CDC/DTBEFrances TyrrellLaboratory Capacity Team, CDC/DTBECortney StaffordLaboratory Capacity Team, CDC/DTBE
APHL acknowledges and sincerely thanks the Fairfax County Public Health Laboratory and the Maryland DHMH Laboratories Administration for their time and contribution in providing many of the images used throughout the presentations.
The presenter for the "Overview of Tuberculosis," "AFB Smear Microscopy," "Identification of Mycobacteria," and "Drug Susceptibility Testing for MTB Complex" modules is Julie Tans-Kersten, Wisconsin Laboratory of Hygiene.
The presenter for the "Laboratory Biosafety" and "Specimen Collection, Transport, Handling, and Processing" modules is Mary DeMartino, Massachusetts William A. Hinton State Laboratory Institute.
The presenter for the "Overview of Mycobacterial Culture, Identification and Drug Susceptibility Testing" as well as "Mycobacterial Culture" modules is Tracy Stiles, Massachusetts William A. Hinton State Laboratory Institute.
This project was supported by Cooperative Agreement # U60HM000803 from CDC and/or Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC and/or Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.
Specialist, Infectious Disease, TB Programs
Turn around time calculation guidance
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