(Cushing) – The Payne County Health Department is investigating a case of active tuberculosis in a student who attended Cushing High School.  Health officials confirmed the student was recently diagnosed with active tuberculosis and state and county health department officials have initiated an investigation including providing TB testing of household contacts and other close contacts with the student.

Targeted letters were sent out to school staff and to parents of students who might have had significant exposure and who are recommended for testing for possible TB infection.  Testing consists of a simple skin test.  One test is done now and another is done in three months.  If either test if found to be positive, a medical evaluation including chest x-ray will be provided at no cost.  If it is appropriate that preventive medication be prescribed, it will also be provided at no cost.  The medication lessens the risk that an individual with a positive skin test will develop active TB.

The Payne County Health department at 1026 N. Linwood in Cushing will be conducting skin testing this week (June 8-12) from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM.  IN addition, testing will be provided Saturday from 8:00 AM to Noon.  Persons must return to have their skin test read no sooner than 48 hours and no later than 72 hours from the time the test is applied.  The skin test must be read by the county health nurse and cannot be read by students or parents.

People who have not been contacted by the county health department do not need to be tested.  However, if you are concerned or do not know whether a significant exposure occurred, contact the Payne County Health Department at 225-3377.  General information about tuberculosis is available on the State Health Department Website at www.ok.gov/health.