Epidemiology and Infection

Predicting tuberculosis among migrant groups

R. E. WATKINS a1c1 and A. J. PLANT a1
a1 Division of Health Sciences, Curtin University of Technology, GPO Box U1987 Perth, Western Australia 6845


In industrialized countries migrants remain a high-risk group for tuberculosis (TB). Multiple linear regression analysis was used to determine the ability of indicators of TB incidence in the country of birth to predict the incidence of TB among migrants in Australia during 1997. World Health Organization total case notifications, new smear-positive case notifications and the estimated incidence of TB by country of birth explained 55, 69 and 87% of the variance in TB incidence in Australia, respectively. Gross national income of the country of birth and unemployment level in Australia were also significant predictors of TB in migrant groups. Indicators of the incidence of TB in the country of birth are the most important group-level predictors of the rate of TB among migrants in Australia.

(Accepted July 17 2002)

c1 Author for correspondence