Screening and Immunizations

Tuberculosis Screening and Immunizations

Required Tuberculosis Screening

Due to the on-going health concerns faced in the Full-time Training, an application to FTTA cannot be considered or completed until the TB screening process is fully complete and the proper documentation is received and approved by the FTTA Medical Office. It is incumbent upon the applicant to exercise diligence in order to accomplish this in a timely way.

In most cases, TB screening is done by a skin test (PPD) performed within the 6 months prior to the start of the Training. Have a health care provider fill out the FTTA TB Screening Form and submit it by fax to 714-991-8537 or by email to [email protected].

The TB skin test (PPD) requires two visits to a health care provider 48-72 hours apart, and obtaining a chest x-ray report normally requires at least a week. The applicant should allow for this time delay.

In the event that your TB skin test returns positive, or if the PPD test was positive in the past, a radiologist's report of a chest X-ray done after the PPD and within the past 12 months before the start of the training must be submitted.

If the TB screening requirement is fulfilled by chest x-ray, the report must be in English and signed by a radiologist. A statement from a personal physician that the chest x-ray was normal is not sufficient.

An alternate method of screening is by blood test. One advantage of the blood test is that it might turn out normal even if the PPD was positive in the past, which would spare the need for a chest x-ray. However, the blood test is more expensive and is not as widely used as the PPD.

There are two situations in which no skin test, x-ray or blood test is required. One is if the individual has previously had TB, has completed treatment, and is currently without symptoms of cough, fatigue, night sweats or weight loss. The other is if the individual has completed a course of antibiotic prophylaxis for TB (this is usually 6-9 months in duration). In either case, documentation of treatment must be submitted in English.

Recommended Immunizations

COVID-19 Vaccination and Booster(s) — While we strongly recommend that all trainees remain up to date with the current COVID-19 vaccination and boosters per the CDC's recommendation, we leave this decision to each trainee as a matter of conscience or based on consultation with their physician. Accordingly, trainees are no longer required to submit proof of COVID-19 vaccination prior to the start of the term. Please contact us at [email protected] if further explanation is required.

Tetanus/Diptheria/Pertussis (TdaP) — We strongly recommend that you get a TdaP booster if you have not had one in the last 10 years.

Hepatitis A and B immunizations — Hepatitis A is a series of two injections with a six-month interval, and Hepatitis B is usually administered as a three-dose series on a 0-, 1-, and 6-month schedule. If you cannot complete the series before you arrive at the FTTA, you may complete it during the term or when you return home during the interim. These immunizations are now part of the standard childhood immunization protocol. They are strongly recommended before you come to the Training, particularly because of opportunities to go abroad for international gospel trips.

Measles immunization — This must have been done twice within a lifetime (persons born before 1957 are exempt). Since this immunization is required for admission to many colleges, Student Health Service records may show evidence that it was done.

Blood pressure measurement — Your blood pressure should have been taken within the last year.

Trainees should bring a copy of their immunization records to their medical interview. If there are any questions concerning the medical care for the trainees, please feel free to call the Full-time Training and leave a message for the Medical Office.