In many countries (Ethiopia, China and now India) the US Embassy requires children receive a tb test by a panel physician. The tuberculosis skin test (also known as the tuberculin test or PPD test) is a test used to determine if someone has developed an immune response to the bacterium that causes tuberculosis (TB). This response can occur if someone currently has TB, if they were exposed to it in the past, or if they received the BCG vaccine against TB (which is not performed in the U.S.). The World Health Organization estimates that 2 billion people worldwide have latent TB, while around 3 million people worldwide die of TB each year.
If a child tests positive to the PPD test they will be required to receive a chest x-ray to insure they have no signs of TB. If the chest x-ray is also positive they will be required to undergo treatment prior to entry into the US. This treatment can take several weeks, delaying an adoptive child's return to the US with their new family.