TB cases reported at two San Diego County schools

San Diego County health officials reported potential tuberculosis exposures at two county schools after students from the schools tested positive for the disease.

The infected students are from San Ysidro Middle School and Vista High School. The County Health and Human Services Agency is working with the two schools to make sure to notify students and staff who were possibly exposed to the bacterial disease, the Global Dispatch reports.

"Tuberculosis is reported more often in the San Diego region compared to the rest of the country, but the number of cases has decreased here over the last decade," Eric McDonald, the county's deputy public health officer, said, according to the Global Dispatch. "TB can be treated and cured with medication. That's why it's important to identify those who have been infected."

The potential exposure period at San Ysidro occurred between July 31 and November 28 and the potential exposure period at Vista High was between August 20 and October 30.

The county will provide free testing for staff and students who may have been exposed to tuberculosis on Monday at San Ysidro and on December 18 at Vista High School.

Tuberculosis is caused by the Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacterium and spreads through the air from person to person. People who breathe air containing the TB bacteria may become infected. Active TB is typically curable with a standard course of antibiotics.

There were 211 cases of TB reported in San Diego as of this week, the Global Dispatch reports.