Steyning Grammar School member contracts tuberculosis - pupils in close contact being screened

Steyning Grammar School has reassured parents after a member of the school was diagnosed with tuberculosis.

An email sent to parents by Public Health England (PHE) said a member of the school had recently contracted the contagious respiratory disease, known as TB, and had been started on treatment.

The individual is no longer infectious, the email said.

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PHE reassured parents the chance of a parent or child contracting TB in the school was low, but said a risk assessment may be carried out by local TB services.

Steyning Grammar's Church Street site

The bacterial infection is usually only pased on after prolonged close contact with someone who has TB of the lungs and is coughing. Even then, PHE said, the majority of people exposed in this way will not become infected.

The local TB services are compiling a list of people who came into close contact with the sufferer and screening will be carried out.

The email said: "If you/your child is identified as being one of these contacts, you will receive an additional letter informing you of the screening process and arrangements in due course. It is important screening is not undertaken prematurely as this can result in misleading results.

"TB can affect almost any part of the body and so the symptoms can vary, however, the most

common symptoms include:-

"• a persistent cough that lasts over three weeks and gets progressively worse

"• loss of weight for no obvious reason

"• fever and heavy night sweats

"• a general, unusual, and persistent sense of tiredness and being unwell

"• coughing up blood

"If you/your child has any of these symptoms, please consult your GP and take this letter with you. Diagnosing TB as soon as possible and providing correct treatment is the most effective

way to prevent the spread."