Southwestern College officials are working with The San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) to notify staff and students who were possibly exposed to tuberculosis. The period of exposure is from Aug. 20 to Nov. 8.
The college was notified by the HHSA that a student enrolled in the fall semester has been verified to have tuberculosis. The exposure was limited to the students and faculty in the three classes on the Chula Vista campus in which the student was enrolled.
The college sent an email to the students and faculty who were directly exposed.
The college will provide no-cost testing to identified students, faculty and staff starting Dec. 3 to Dec. 14 at the college's Student Health Services building on the main campus room 601F in Chula Vista.
“The initial infection usually has no symptoms, so we recommend testing for all those exposed to assure they are not infected,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. “For any infected individuals, early diagnosis and prompt treatment can prevent the infectious form of the disease.”
Tuberculosis is transmitted from person-to-person through indoor air during prolonged contact with an infectious individual. Most people who are exposed do not become infected. Symptoms of infectious TB include persistent cough, fever, night sweats and unexplained weight loss.
For individuals with symptoms of TB, or who are immune-compromised and may not show symptoms, it is important that the person sees their medical provider to rule out TB. Tuberculosis can be cured with antibiotics.
Individuals who would like more information on this potential exposure are asked to call:
Southwestern Students Health Services (619) 482-6354
County TB Control Program (619) 692-8621
The number of annual TB cases in San Diego County has decreased since the early 1990s and has stabilized in recent years. There were 258 cases reported in 2016 and 237 in 2017. To date, 175 cases have been reported in 2018.