In a follow-up to a report nearly two weeks ago, Vermont health officials said Tuesday a total of 223 students at Charlotte Central School had TB skin tests on Friday, February 6, and were evaluated by Health Department nurses on Monday, February 9. Of those, eight children had positive results.

Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria/CDC
Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria/CDC

This brings the total to date to 16– 15 children and one adult have tested positive out of 380 students and staff who have been tested and evaluated.

The Vermont Department of Health says it is perfectly safe for children and adults with positive skin test results to be at the school, and for others to be around them, because they are not sick with TB and cannot spread the bacteria.

A positive skin test result does NOT mean that a person is sick with TB disease (active TB), or that they can pass the bacteria on to anyone else. A positive skin test result means that the person has been exposed to TB, and has the bacteria in his or her body.

There are no active cases of TB at the school, and there is no ongoing risk. The Health Department set up TB testing clinics after an employee was diagnosed with active TB disease. The person who has active TB is not at the school, and the Health Department has not identified any additional cases of TB illness.

Health Department nurses also provided TB skin tests for school staff on Monday (Feb. 9), and these tests will be evaluated on Wednesday (Feb. 11). A small number of students and staff who have not been tested yet will attend small make-up clinics in the coming days.