Inmates get TB tests

Posted: Friday, October 01, 2010

ANCHORAGE - All inmates at a correctional facility north of Kenai will be getting tested for tuberculosis.

The Department of Corrections says two cellmates of a prisoner who collapsed and coughed up blood at the Wildwood Pre-Trial Facility tested positive in a screening for TB.

Officials say that requires testing of the jail's almost 130 inmates.

State epidemiologist Beth Funk told The Anchorage Daily News that just because the two tests came back positive, that does not mean the two are actively infected with TB.

State health officials say all three men tested negative when first arriving at the jail.

They say it is possible the two tested positive because of prior exposure before arriving at the jail, or it could be that TB bacteria is being spread inside the jail.

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