North Shore students tested for TB

January 14, 2008 11:05:49 AM PST
Harris County health officials today are testing more than a hundred North Shore high school students for exposure to tuberculosis. This, after a student was diagnosed with the contagious illness before Christmas.The confirmation came on December 19th that an eleventh grader at did contract tuberculosis but since then all of the people with who he may have had contact with, including 175 students and 8 teachers have been identified and they were tested on campus this morning.

As students arrived at North Shore Senior High this morning, they had a big test on their minds. Although, this one required no studying -- tuberculosis testing began around 8am in the library. Pupils and parents alike hope they make the grade.

"I did call the administration and they assured me that everything was OK and that there was no spread of germs," said concerned parent Mary Martinez.

"Do you believe that," we asked.

"Yeah, I do," said Martinez.

News of the infected student was announced by letters sent home and school administrators have been working with county health officials to manage the TB discovery quickly and efficiently.

"They feel very confident that this is a pretty contained situation," said Bourke Meagher with Galena Park ISD.

Results won't be complete until Wednesday. Meantime, students like Kentino Chenevert, who was sick last week, already got tested through his family physician.

"I went back Saturday and I got papers to prove that and I'm infected so they said I was good," said Chenevert.

But still, some parents remain understandably concerned.

"It's a very serious disease and could be spread throughout the school," said concerned parent Ron Richards.

While others have shown complete faith in Galena Park ISD`s management of the situation so far.

The Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services Department were the ones that conducted the tests today. Results will be sent directly from those county departments to the students' homes. But at this point, there have been no additional cases of tuberculosis reported. Many parents say they already had their kids tested.

The student, who was afflicted, has reportedly been cleared by a doctor to go back to class.

The last there was any report of tuberculosis at this campus was back in October 2003.

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