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Methodist Hospital patients warned of possible TB exposure | News

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Methodist Hospital patients warned of possible TB exposure
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SACRAMENTO - Sacramento County public health officials, along with Methodist Hospital of Sacramento, released a statement on Monday alerting the public that an individual with active tuberculosis (TB) had spent time in the hospital recently.

Sacramento County spokeswoman Laura McCasland said health officials were working with hospital administration to assess patients, visitors and staff to determine who may have been exposed to the TB germ.

According to McCasland, there were periods of exposure in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) from Aug. 23, 2012 to Sept. 3, 2012 by the infected visitor. Parents of babies in the unit at that time were being contacted, while other potentially exposed individuals will be contacted with a few days.

No information about the infected individual was released, per state and federal patient confidentiality laws.

Olivia Kasirye, MD, MS, Health Officer, Sacramento County stated, "Although it may be a new experience for the patients, visitors and staff to the hospital, contact investigations are a regular activity for Sacramento County Public Health TB Program staff, who receive new active TB disease cases regularly each month. TB is preventable and curable."

For general TB information, visit www.cdc.gov/tb/. During business hours, Sacramento County residents can contact Sacramento County Public Health at (916) 875-5881.

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