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Laboratory Reagent Shortage for MTB Identification

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has learned that the Hologic AccuProbe culture identification tests are on backorder as a result of a shortage in the supply chain system. AccuProbe is one of the primary or secondary identification methods for Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) from culture used by many clinical, commercial, and public health laboratories in the United States. Shortage of this test could result in increased turnaround time for the identification of MTB and some nontuberculous mycobacteria from culture. 

Rapid identification of MTB is critical for patient care and public health response. Given the slow growth rate of MTB, growth-based tests have a lengthy turnaround time; this timeframe could be extended given the current situation. CDC, therefore, reiterates the importance of routine performance of nucleic acid amplification tests (NAAT) for direct detection of MTB in clinical specimens in the diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) for patients with signs and symptoms of pulmonary TB (CDC guidelines for use of NAAT) (Diagnostic guidelines).

If you have any questions, please contact the Ohio Department of Health TB Program at TBProgram@odh.ohio.gov for assistance.