The Coast News Group
Cal State University San Marcos
Students and staff at Cal State San Marcos may have been exposed to tuberculosis.
San Marcos

Tuberculosis exposure possible at CSUSM

SAN MARCOS — Students and staff at Cal State San Marcos may have
been exposed to tuberculosis this fall semester, according to the San Diego County Health
and Human Services Agency.

HHSA Public Health Services and CSUSM officials have worked together
to identify and notify those who had a higher risk of exposure to tuberculosis
and will be providing no-cost testing to individuals at increased risk for
infection. The period of exposure was from Aug. 30 to Nov. 8.

“Symptoms of active TB include persistent cough, fever, night sweats
and unexplained weight loss,” said Dr. Wilma J. Wooten, county public health
officer. “Most people who become infected after exposure to tuberculosis do
not get sick right away. Some who become infected with tuberculosis will become
ill at some point in the future, sometimes even years later.”

“Blood tests and skin tests are effective to determine whether
someone has been infected,” she said. “All those notified of a high risk of
exposure are encouraged to receive no-cost testing.”

Tuberculosis is an airborne disease that is transmitted from person to
person through inhalation of the bacteria from the air, which are spread
when someone sick with TB coughs, speaks, sings or breathes. people with
frequent and prolonged indoor exposure to a person who is sick with TB should
get tested.

Individuals who would like more information on the potential exposure
can contact Cal State San Marcos at [email protected] or the County TB
Control Program at (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 192 cases
reported in 2020 and 201 cases in 2021. As of the end of October, a total of
150 cases have been reported this year. An estimated 175,000 people in San
Diego County have latent TB infection and are at risk for developing active TB
without preventive treatment.