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How the County is safeguarding San Diegans against TB

TB Case Reported at San Ysidro High School

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May 15, 2208

The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) is working with Sweetwater Union High School District officials to notify classmates, faculty and staff who were possibly exposed to tuberculosis (TB) at San Ysidro High School.  A student who attended classes from Jan. 8 to May 7, 2008 has been diagnosed with TB.

“Tuberculosis continues to be a health concern for the community,” says Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County Public Health Officer.  “Public Health Services continually monitors community health issues and is committed to educating the public about possible exposures and prevention methods.”

HHSA TB Control and San Ysidro High School officials have identified approximately 200 people, including students, faculty and staff that were potentially exposed.  Letters informing parents of the possible exposure were distributed yesterday.  The parents of an additional 16 students, as well as a teacher, at Montgomery High School are also being notified of their children’s possible exposure to TB.  The Montgomery students and teacher attended a spring intersession class at the San Ysidro High campus.  TB testing at San Ysidro High School will take place the week of May 19 and at Montgomery High School the week of May 26.

“I want to assure everyone that we are doing everything possible to ensure the safety of our students, staff and community,” said San Ysidro High Principal Hector Espinoza. “We are working closely with the County’s Public Health Services and district personnel to meet the needs of our stakeholders and follow all mandated procedures.”

Tuberculosis is not uncommon in the San Diego region. In 2007, there were 280 total cases of tuberculosis in San Diego County.  In 2008 to date, there have been 61 cases of TB.

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.

Individuals with no medical provider, or anyone who would like more information, may call the County TB Control Program at (619) 692-8621.