BY NATALIA KOZIKOWSKA
Last week, students and teachers at Hillcrest High School were tested for tuberculosis after one student contracted the potentially fatal bacteria.
According to a statement issued by the Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene, as a safety precaution, on March 25, the City agency tested 170 students and six staffers who may have been exposed.
The infected student is reportedly doing well and is currently being treated.
TB is spread through the air when people who have an active infection cough, sneeze or otherwise transmit respiratory fluids through the air.
Most infections do not have symptoms. About one in 10 latent infections progress to an active disease which, if left untreated, kills more than 50 percent of those infected.
Although TB is an airborne infection, the DOHMH does not feel that students and staffers at Hillcrest are currently at risk.
“Given that the person with TB is receiving treatment, there is no health risk to students or staff currently at the school,” the statement read.
“DOHMH routinely conducts investigations into infectious TB cases at schools, worksites, etc. During these investigations, we test exposed persons, so that we can treat and prevent future cases of TB,” the release went on to say. “With proper care and treatment, TB can be prevented and cured.”
Reach Natalia Kozikowska at (718)357-7400 Ext. 123 or firstname.lastname@example.org or @nkozikowska.