The Fairfax County Health Department is recommending that students and staff at a northern Virginia high school be tested for tuberculosis after a higher number than expected tested positive for exposure to the disease.
The health department said Monday that 1,900 letters were sent to affected staff and students at Robert E. Lee High School in Springfield. Tests will be done at the school in August.
Last month, the county reported three active TB cases at the school. At the time, the county recommended only a limited number of people be tested. The wider testing has been ordered as a precaution.
Specifically, the first round of tests found a 5 percent exposure rate among those who were born in the U.S. The normal TB exposure rate for the U.S.-born population is about 1 percent, said health department director Gloria Addo-Ayensu at a news conference Monday.
Health department spokesman Glen Barbour said no additional active TB cases have been found beyond the three cases already reported.
The three patients are recovering well with medication, Addo-Ayensu said.
Fairfax County Health Director Statement:
The Fairfax County Health Department recognizes that there may be some concerns about how the expansion of the TB investigation at Lee High School will impact school activities. Fairfax County Health Director Dr. Gloria Addo-Ayensu would like to convey to the Lee High School community that “there is no reason to restrict activities or attendance at Lee High School because of the expansion. All activities at the school can continue as usual and Lee High School students who are undergoing testing can continue to participate in all activities.”
Lee High School parents who have questions may call the Health Department’s call center at 703-267-3511.
TB testing is a two-step process.
It is important when selecting a date for the skin test, the person is able to return on the corresponding date for a health care worker to determine if the test is positive or negative. The skin test will need to be repeated if the person returns any other time.
TB TESTING SCHEDULE AT LEE HIGH SCHOOL
· Skin Test: Saturday, August 3, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. – Return for Results: Monday, August 5, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.
· Skin Test: Saturday, August 3, 12 – 6 p.m. – Return for Results: Tuesday, August 6, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.
· Skin Test: Monday, August 5, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. – Return for Results: Wednesday, August 7, 12 – 4 p.m.
· Skin Test: Tuesday, August 6, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. – Return for Skin Test: Thursday, August 8, 12 – 4 p.m.
· Skin Test: Saturday, August 10, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. – Return for Results: Monday, August 12, 12 – 4 p.m.
WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
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