ASU Requesting Students Be Tested For Tuberculosis


By Ashley Thompson

A student at Alabama State University has been diagnosed with tuberculoisis.

Student Kala Parks says she was alarmed when she received an email from school officials.

"It was like you have come in contact and you need to get tested," she says.

Approximately 600 students and faculty at Alabama State University have been exposed to tuberculosis. And some say they're worried about contracting the disease.

"It ain't safe," says student Dominique Pace. "It aint safe. It makes you not want to come to school."

"I was already sick before so I'm really concerned now so I will be getting tested," says Parks.

School officials sent letters out to those who could be at risk and now, the Alabama Department of Public Health is requesting screening for those who received them.

"We're more concerned with people who have spent hours with the individual in an enclosed area, people who are in class or in the same dorm room or who have been in a vehicle," says Pam Fortner, the Director of the Division of Tuberculosis Control.

Fortner says instead of using the more common skin tests, Public Health officials will do blood tests on those at risk.

"There is now two different types of blood tests that are used that are much more accurate and much more reliable than the older TB skin tests."

Student Affairs Vice President Dr. William Hytche says after the initial tests, the Alabama Department of Public Health will re-test students before the fall semester lets out.

"With TB, it doesn't always show up immediately so it can incubate for years even," he says.

If you have any concerns, you are encouraged to call the Alabama Department of Public Health at 334-206-6228

ASU will conduct testing Friday from 9AM to 2PM in the Acadome.

Public Health officials say they should have those results back by Tuesday at the latest.






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