Tuberculosis (TB) Screening

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General Information

Tuberculosis (TB) Screening at Lehigh University is required for all incoming students, testing is only required if indicated, pending review of form. The TB screening form can be found on the Patient Portal.

What are the necessary steps for completion of TB screening requirements at Lehigh University?

  • Completion of TB screen form by student, review of form by Health & Wellness Center staff, and testing as indicated for students identified as at risk.
  • Testing includes the administration of a QuantiFERON Gold TB test. A fee of $70 will be billed to your bursar account, often times this is not covered by insurance. TB skin testing is not accepted for students identified as at risk.
  • Test results will be emailed to students via secure messaging advising of further medical evaluation and possible treatment for latent TB infection (LTBI) or TB disease if needed.

Registration will be blocked for those individuals who do not complete the process as listed above.

There are no penalties based on test results.

What is a QuantiFERON Gold Test?

QuantiFERON gold is one of two Interferon-Gamma Release Assays (IGRAs) that has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. IGRAs are whole-blood tests that can aid in diagnosing Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, including both LTBI and TB disease.

What are the advantages of IGRAs?

  • Requires a single patient visit to conduct the test.
  • Results can be available within 24-48 hours.
  • Prior BCG (bacille Calmette-Guerin) vaccination does not cause a false-positive IGRA test result.

How do you interpret QuantiFERON Gold test results?

  • NEGATIVE result suggests that infection is unlikely. No more follow-up required at the Lehigh University Health & Wellness Center at this time.
  • A POSITIVE test result suggests that M. tuberculosis infection is likely. A chest x-ray will be ordered to exclude TB disease, the cost of which will be covered by student health insurance. All students are eligible to purchase student health insurance prior to testing. An appointment with a physician from the Bethlehem Health Bureau will be scheduled to review results of your chest x-ray and offer you a medication option; there is no fee for this service. The chest x-ray and medical evaluation are mandatory, the medication protocol is optional.
  • An INDETERMINATE or BORDERLINE result indicates an uncertain likelihood of M. tuberculosis infection -- to be evaluated on an individual basis.