Open Access Open Badges Research article

Framework of behavioral indicators for outcome evaluation of TB health promotion: a Delphi study of TB suspects and Tb patients

Ying Li1*, John Ehiri2*, Daiyu Hu3, Yanqi Zhang4, Qingya Wang3, Shun Zhang3 and Jia Cao5

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Social Medicine and Health Service Management, Third Military Medical University, No.30 Gaotanyan Road, Shapingba district, Chongqing 400038, China

2 Division of Health Promotion Sciences/Global Health Institute, Mel & Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA

3 Chongqing Institute of TB Prevention and Treatment, Jiulongpo district, Chongqing, China

4 Department of Health statistics, College of Preventive Medicine, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, China

5 College of Preventive Medicine, Key Lab of Medical Protection for Electromagnetic Radiation, Ministry of Education of China, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, China

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BMC Infectious Diseases 2014, 14:268  doi:10.1186/1471-2334-14-268

Published: 16 May 2014



Health promotion for prevention and control of Tuberculosis (TB) is implemented worldwide because of its importance, but few reports have evaluated its impact on behavior due to a lack of standard outcome indicators. The objective of this study was to establish a framework of behavioral indicators for outcome evaluation of TB health promotion among TB suspects and patients.


A two-round modified Delphi method involving sixteen TB control experts was used to establish a framework of behavioral indicators for outcome evaluation of TB health promotion targeted at TB suspects and patients.


Sixteen of seventeen invited experts in TB control (authority score of 0.91 on a 1.0 scale) participated in round 1 survey. All sixteen experts also participated in a second round survey. After two rounds of surveys and several iterations among the experts, there was consensus on a framework of indicators for measuring outcomes of TB health promotion for TB suspects and patients. For TB suspects, the experts reached consensus on 2 domains (“Healthcare seeking behavior” and “Transmission prevention”), 3 subdomains (“Seeking care after onset of TB symptoms”, “Pathways of seeking care” and “Interpersonal contact etiquette”), and 8 indicators (including among others, “Length of patient delay”). For TB patients, consensus was reached on 3 domains (“Adherence to treatment”, “Healthy lifestyle” and “Transmission prevention”), 8 subdomains (including among others, “Adherence to their medication”), and 14 indicators (including “Percentage of patients who adhered to their medication”). Operational definitions and data sources were provided for each indicator.


The findings of this study provide the basis for debate among international experts on a framework for achieving global consensus on outcome indicators for TB health promotion interventions targeted at TB patients and suspects. Such consensus will help to increase effectiveness of TB health promotion, while ensuring international comparability of outcome data.

Health promotion; Outcome evaluation; TB suspect; TB patient; Indicator