Health Department Looking For Those Who Had Contact With Student With Tuberculosis

By: WOWT Email
By: WOWT Email

Health officials in northeastern Nebraska are tracking down those who might have been exposed to a Norfolk student diagnosed with tuberculosis.

The Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department has worked with the student's family to compile a list of people who may have been in contact with the student.

Tuberculosis is a contagious lung disease that's relatively rare in the United States. State health records say only 125 cases were recorded in Nebraska from 2009 through 2013. Federal records say that in 2013 only 9,600 new U.S. tuberculosis cases were reported.

Parents of students at Park Avenue Christian School were given information Wednesday night at a meeting arranged by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

The school is affiliated with Community Bible Church. The Rev. Aaron Hess said the meeting was called to share information about the disease. He said other students exposed to the disease will be tested.

TB is potentially deadly if it goes untreated and a person would need prolonged exposure to the bacteria before contracting it. It is not spread by shaking hands, sharing food/drink or kissing, but by breathing in the bacteria.

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