Durham high school parents want results from TB tests

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – More than 200 people have been tested for tuberculosis in Durham and while some of the results are in, some results remain unknown.

Many parents at the school where people were tested want answers.

A student at Northern High School tested positive for tuberculosis on October 11.

That got Deanna Hall’s attention.

“You never know how contact could occur,” said Hall, a parent of a freshman at Northern.

Hall took her son on her own to the doctor to have him tested to be sure he was not exposed to it.

The county health department told CBS North Carolina 223 students and staff members were identified as people who came into contact with the student and were tested.

A health department spokesperson released a statement saying there were no new tuberculosis cases found and the investigation is ongoing.

“Most people who have been exposed to tuberculosis will never develop active disease,” said Arlene Sena, Durham County Health Department Medical director. “We will continue to evaluate persons who have been potentially exposed to TB in our investigation to minimize any future transmission in our community.”

Hall and other parents want to hear the final results soon.

“Confirm and give us a better thought to know that our child is safe,” said Tyrone McNeil, parent.

“They’re not telling a whole lot, if anything,” said Hall.

Tuberculosis is spread through the air when a person is infected with the bacteria.

Dan Gilfort, Northern’s principal, said he’s been advised the majority of tests have come back negative and the remaining tests should be done soon.

A Durham Public Schools spokesperson said the school system has been communicating with parents when it learns any updates in the investigation.


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