New initiative in London seeks to improve housing conditions to prevent TB transmission

24 March 2010 - London - The ARCHIVE Institute (Architecture for Health in Vulnerable Environments) has launched a tuberculosis and housing community engagement project in the North West London borough of Brent for refugee and migrant communities.

There were 1109 new cases of Tuberculosis in North West London boroughs in 2008, the highest number coming from Brent. Ethnic minorities, excluded and hard-to-reach groups of society are the most vulnerable to TB in London.

ARCHIVE's approach is to use cost-effective, low-tech architectural responses to prevent TB. The ultimate goal of this project is to raise awareness of adverse health outcomes that can result from inadequate housing conditions - particularly among refugee and migrant communities in Brent. ARCHIVE and NHS Brent have solicited the help of Brent Refugee and Migrant Forum (BRMF) and other locally based community organizations.

The National Health Service in Brent and ARCHIVE have formed a partnership which focuses on using housing as a process for inhibiting TB transmission. This project will see both parties, along with other community based organizations, host a number of interactive community workshops that encourage participants to explore and understand the ways in which housing conditions affect health. Outputs from workshops such as leaflets and other communication materials will detail the TB risk associated with inadequate housing and will be distributed to local doctors.

ARCHIVE’s goal is the creation of ‘healthy homes’: living conditions, which reduce health risks and provide care for the UK’s most disadvantaged communities.