Tuberculosis (TB) Services

Tuberculosis (TB) is a communicable disease caused by bacteria that is spread from person to person by respiratory droplets. TB normally affects the lungs, but can also affect other areas of the body.
Tuberculosis Spread Animation
How do You Get TB?
TB is spread from person to person through the air. Germs are put into the air when a person with TB of the lungs coughs, sneezes, laughs or sings.

TB: General Information
What to do if You Think You Have TB
The general symptoms of TB disease include feelings of sickness or weakness, weight loss, fever, and night sweats. The symptoms of TB disease of the lungs also include coughing (with or without blood) and chest pain. Symptoms of TB disease in other parts of the body depend on the area affected. TB usually affects the lungs. Symptoms of TB of the lungs may include cough, chest pain, and coughing up blood.
Tuberculosis Symptoms
Who Can Get TB
Anyone can get TB, but some people are more at risk than others. Those in high-risk category include:
  • Anyone in close contact with someone with TB (family member, coworker, or friend)
  • Poor and/or homeless persons
  • Foreign-born individuals from countries where TB is common
  • Nursing home residents
  • Prisoners
  • Alcoholics and drug users
  • People with medical conditions such as diabetes, certain types of cancers and HIV
Download the Exposure to TB (PDF) for more information.

How TB is Diagnosed
If you show signs of TB, you should have a TB skin test. If the test is positive, you will be given other tests to see if you have TB infection or TB disease. CCPHC does not provide chest x-rays but people may qualify through a program established with Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.

Where to Get a TB Skin Test
In Clay County, you can have a TB skin test done at Clay County Public Health Center on Monday, Wednesday and Friday only. Testing is not done on Tuesdays or Thursdays.

A 2-step TB Skin Test is 2 separate TB Skin Tests conducted 1 - 3 weeks apart. The 2-step test for tuberculosis is required for certain populations. Please call for information on the requirements recommended by the Missouri Department of Health, Bureau of Tuberculosis Control and the CDC. If you have had a TB skin test within the past year, please bring documentation and you will only need to receive a 1-step test. There is no charge for the second step of a 2-step TB skin test.

The decision to conduct a tuberculin skin test on an individual is a decision to treat until completion, if that person is found to be tuberculin-positive. Download the TB Skin Testing (PDF) for more information.

Payment Options
The Clay County Public Health Center accepts the following for payment:
  • Cash, Check, Credit Card, or Debit Card
  • Medicaid (Most fees are covered by Medicaid)
Difference Between TB Infection & TB Disease
People with TB infection (without disease) have the germ that causes TB in their body. These individuals do not have symptoms and are not sick because the germ is inactive in their body. These individuals cannot spread TB to others; however, they may develop TB disease in the future, especially if they are in a high-risk category.

Those with TB disease are sick and display one or more obvious symptoms. These individuals are capable of spreading the infection to others. Those with TB disease can often suffer permanent body damage or death.

TB Treatment
TB is easily prevented and cured. Individuals with both TB infection and TB disease are treated with medications. Those with TB infection may be treated with medication to prevent them from developing TB disease. Medications are prescribed to cure active TB disease. Download the Treatment of Latent Tuberculosis Infection (LTBI) (PDF) for more information.