Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Supes to discuss moving TB clinic to Kino

A move of the Pima County Health Department Tuberculosis Clinic from downtown to near University Physicians Hospital at Kino will be discussed Tuesday by the Board of Supervisors.

The clinic now is housed in the first floor of the Pima County Health and Welfare Building, 150 W. Congress St.

The move would be to a county-owned building near the Herbert K. Abrams Public Health Center, 3950 S. Country Club Road.

The center treated 23 patients with active tuberculosis last year, according to Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry.

A move from the current clinic location is needed primarily because of “lack of appropriate air handling for this type of clinic,” Huckelberry wrote in a memorandum to board members Friday.

Tuberculosis is a mycobacteria infection, generally in the lungs but also can affect spinal areas and the brain. It is spread when a person with active tuberculosis coughs, sneezes, spits, or breathes in close proximity to others.

The county TB clinic also serves as a screening center for the disease. It screened 2,715 persons between July and December last year. The screenings are sometimes required for employment in health and child care facilities. TB screening also is required for gaining admission to area homeless shelters.

Huckelberry said several locations were studied as potential new homes for the TB clinic. A county-owned building opposite the Abrams Health Center appears the most suitable, Huckelberry said.

“Initial reviews by TB Clinic staff have been favorable to both the proposed layout as well as the proposed methodology to achieve exceptional air quality compliance,” he told the supervisors.

Tucson’s arid climate has served as a haven for tuberculosis sufferers since the Southern Pacific Railroad arrived here and improved outside access to the area in 1880.

Tucson Medical Center started as a clinic for tuberculosis sufferers. The Desert Sanitorium opened on 300 acres in 1927.


If you go:

When: Tuesday starting at 9 a.m.

Where: Pima County Administration Building, 130 W.Congress St.

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