Community-based testing of migrants for infectious diseases (COMBAT-ID): impact, acceptability and cost-effectiveness of identifying infectious diseases among migrants in primary care: protocol for an interrupted time-series, qualitative and health economic analysis.
Pareek M., Eborall HC., Wobi F., Ellis KS., Kontopantelis E., Zhang F., Baggaley R., Hollingsworth TD., Baines D., Patel H., Haldar P., Patel M., Stephenson I., Browne I., Gill P., Kapur R., Farooqi A., Abubakar I., Griffiths C.
BACKGROUND:Migration is a major global driver of population change. Certain migrants may be at increased risk of infectious diseases, including tuberculosis (TB), HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C, and have poorer outcomes. Early diagnosis and management of these infections can reduce morbidity, mortality and onward transmission and is supported by national guidelines. To date, screening initiatives have been sporadic and focused on individual diseases; systematic routine testing of migrant groups for multiple infections is rarely undertaken and its impact is unknown. We describe the protocol for the evaluation of acceptability, effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of an integrated approach to screening migrants for a range of infectious diseases in primary care. METHODS AND ANALYSIS:We will conduct a mixed-methods study which includes an observational cohort with interrupted time-series analysis before and after the introduction of routine screening of migrants for infectious diseases (latent TB, HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C) when first registering with primary care within Leicester, UK. We will assess trends in the monthly number and rate of testing and diagnosis for latent TB, HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C to determine the effect of the policy change using segmented regression analyses at monthly time-points. Concurrently, we will undertake an integrated qualitative sub-study to understand the views of migrants and healthcare professionals to the new testing policy in primary care. Finally, we will evaluate the cost-effectiveness of combined infection testing for migrants in primary care. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION:The study has received HRA and NHS approvals for both the interrupted time-series analysis (16/SC/0127) and the qualitative sub-study (16/EM/0159). For the interrupted time-series analysis we will only use fully anonymised data. For the qualitative sub-study, we will gain written, informed, consent. Dissemination of the results will be through local and national meetings/conferences as well as publications in peer-reviewed journals.