The County Health and Human Services Agency on Monday reported that students and staff at Mount Carmel High School in Rancho Peñasquitos may have been exposed to tuberculosis.
The news release:
An individual at Mt. Carmel High School was recently diagnosed with tuberculosis (TB) and may have exposed students and staff to the disease, the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) reported [Monday].
HHSA is working in close collaboration with the Poway Unified School District to notify those who were possibly exposed. The period of exposure is from Jan. 3, 2012, to March 6, 2012.
“TB spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County Public Health Officer. “Typically, only people who have had close, extended contact with the infected person run the risk of contracting the disease.”
Symptoms of active TB include persistent cough, fever, night sweats and unexplained weight loss. Most people who are exposed to TB do not develop the disease. When it does occur, it can be treated and cured with medication; that’s why it’s important to identify those who have been exposed.
No-cost testing for exposed students and staff will be held on March 27, 2012, at Mt. Carmel High School located at 9550 Carmel Mountain Road in Rancho Peñasquitos. Follow-up testing will be offered at the school on May 8, 2012.
Individuals who would like more information about the exposure may contact County TB Control Program at (619) 692-8621. Mt. Carmel High School parents who would like more information about testing may contact Sharon Raffer, Poway Unified School District Director of Communications, at (858) 521-2707. Please mention you are calling in regard to the TB exposure at Mt. Carmel High School.
There have been 32 TB cases reported thus far in 2012 in San Diego County. In 2011, there were 263 local cases of TB reported.