Students in Nyack exposed to person with tuberculosis

NYACK, New York (WABC) -- Health officials say in a letter to parents that several students at two Rockland County schools have been exposed to an individual with infectious tuberculosis.

Dozens of students who were exposed to the person at Nyack Middle and Liberty Elementary schools have been identified and given information about testing.

The county health department sent a letter to parents of the students, stressing exposure was limited because it did not occur on school grounds.

Eyewitness News has learned the person with tuberculosis is a school bus monitor who may have contracted the potentially fatal infection while out of the country and fell ill two weeks ago.

County Health Department officials say there shouldn't be any risk of further spread of the bacterial disease, since tuberculosis germs only remain in the environment for a few hours.

Symptoms include cough, weight loss, fatigue and night sweats. The students are being administered skin tests, with none so far testing positive.

Officials said the health department is administering the response to the person who recently tested positive for active tuberculosis.

The department has notified those who have had direct contact with the patient and has advised them of any testing or treatment that may be needed.

No students the bus monitor has come into contact with have shown any signs of symptoms.

Superintendent of Schools James Montesanto said at no time was this individual in any of the school buildings and no threat was posed to the student population or staff.

The school bus monitor who remains hospitalized is being treated with a variety of medications and is improving.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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