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County Health Reports 2 TB Cases; Advises Testing For Those Exposed

An undated X-ray of a Tuberculosis patient's lung.

Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Above: An undated X-ray of a Tuberculosis patient's lung.

The county Health and Human Services Agency Friday reported two unrelated tuberculosis cases, and that people may have been exposed to the bacteria at Southwestern and San Diego City colleges, and on a Metropolitan Transit System bus route.

The county is working with officials from both community colleges and MTS to notify those who may have been exposed to TB. The periods of possible exposure were:

-Aug. 26 to Dec. 10, 2019 at Southwestern College;

-July 26, to Aug. 5, 2019 and Aug. 19 to Dec. 16, 2019 at San Diego City College;

-July 26 to Aug. 5, 2019 and Aug. 19 to Dec. 16, 2019, Monday through Friday on MTS Bus Route 12, with two departure routes: from Skyline Hills between 7:59 and 8:47 a.m. to City College Transit Center, and from City College Transit Center between 7:04 and 8:04 p.m. to Skyline Hills.

Symptoms of active TB include persistent cough, fever, night sweats and unexplained weight loss, said Wilma Wooten, county public health officer. "Most people who are exposed to tuberculosis do not develop the disease," she added.

Tuberculosis can be treated and cured with medication. People with TB symptoms or are immune-compromised are encouraged to see their medical healthcare provider, according to the county.

According to the county, the number of tuberculosis cases has decreased since the early 1990s, with 265 cases reported in 2019.

Free TB testing will be available at Southwestern College Student Health Services, 900 Otay Lakes Road, from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday. San Diego City College students may contact the county TB Control Program to arrange for testing or visit the Student Health Clinic, which will reopen Feb. 3.

The county advised Metropolitan Transit System passengers to contact their medical provider or HHSA to arrange for TB testing.

More information is available by calling the Southwestern Students Health Services, 619-482-6354; Dotti Cordell, of the San Diego City College Student Health Clinic, 619-388-3903; and the county TB Control Program at 619- 692-8621.

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