Up to 50 people, mostly co-workers, are undergoing tests for tuberculosis, after an employee ar MacDill Air Force Base was diagnosed with the disease, according to the Hillsborough County Health Department.
MacDill, in south Tampa, employes 15,500 military personnel and about 3,000 civilians.
According to the Hillsborough County Health Department, the unidentified employee is recovering in isolation and has started TB drug therapy. The case was first reported to the county on July 12.
Health officials say the sick individual no longer poses a health risk to others. Officials said that the individual is "presumed" to have TB and started the drug therapy as a "precatuinary measure."
Co-workers and community members who had close contact with the employee were contacted and started testing this week. TB is a lung infection that is spread by routine contact, when a person breathes in airborne germs.
People most ar risk of infection are those who've had very close, day-to-day contact with the infected person, according to health officials.
"An investigation of the individual's household, place of work, and other
close contacts is ongoing," said Charman Benemon, Hillsborough County Health
Department, Public Health nurse.
"We are working closely with public health officials at MacDill to ensure the health and safety of all their employees and community members."
Members of the Hillsborough County Health Department Tuberculosis Center will
conduct testing Tuesday and return Friday to read the results.
TB is less contagious than measles, mumps, chicken pox, and influenza, and, even if a person is infected, the disease may remain dormant and not contagious to others.
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