PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – A person associated with a Vancouver elementary school was recently diagnosed with tuberculosis, a potentially fatal and contagious bacterial disease, according to Clark County officials.
The county made the announcement on Friday, but the person – who remains unidentified to the public – had spent time in Minnehaha Elementary School prior to the beginning of summer break. Public health officials say they will contact students and staff members that may have been in close contact with the person throughout the next week.
Tuberculosis, also known as TB, is spread when infected individuals share air with others frequently or for prolonged periods, health experts say, adding that “when a person who is infected does not have symptoms or evidence of TB disease, this is called latent TB infection.”
According to Clark County Public Health, about 10% of people with latent TB infection will develop TB disease in the future.
It is uncommon for TB to spread in school settings, though health officials say it is possible. Although there is currently no evidence of additional cases in the school, Clark County will recommend testing for those at risk.
Testing will not be recommended for all students and staff.