Nov 21, 2017

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1. The Ministry of Health would like to inform that starting 22 November 2017, the Ministry of Health with the cooperation of the Ministry of Education will be conducting screening tests for tuberculosis (TB) to all students and staff at Sayyidina Hasan Secondary School. This is a precautionary measure following the identification of a number of students with TB at the school.

2. All students who have been diagnosed with TB are in a stable condition and have either completed or are currently undergoing treatment under the care of specialist doctors and an expert TB team from the Ministry of Health. In addition, household contacts of the affected students have already undergone or are currently undergoing screening as a matter of routine practice.

3. These school-based screening tests involves the completion of a symptom questionnaire and a skin test which can be read two to three days later. Screening tests are not diagnostic, and a positive screening test does not mean that the individual has the disease. A positive test indicates the need for further investigation to determine if that person has the disease and requires treatment.

4. As well as a letter inviting their children for screening, all parents have been sent a fact sheet with Frequently Asked Questions. Any further enquiries from those affected should be directed to a dedicated hotline 7181103 specially set up for this purpose.

5. TB is a bacterial infection mostly found in the lungs but can affect any part of the body. TB is curable with a course of medicine, usually lasting 6 months. Only TB of the lungs or throat may be infectious and most people will not be infectious within two weeks of taking medications to treat TB.

6. Cough lasting more than two weeks is often a first symptom of active TB. Other common symptoms are a high temperature (fever), sweats, feeling unwell, weight loss, pains in the chest, and poor appetite.

7. You normally need close and prolonged contact with a person who has active TB in the lungs to become infected with TB. In Brunei Darussalam, if someone is diagnosed with TB, then health workers will arrange TB screening for their close contacts. This usually means the individual’s household.

8. The Ministry of Health is actively monitoring the situation and is in contact with colleagues from the World Health Organisation to ensure that all necessary steps are taken and deliver the highest standard of care to those affected. Members of the public are advised not to panic, and we seek the public’s cooperation in avoiding unnecessary speculation and rumors on the situation. More information can be obtained from the website and general enquiries at Talian Darussalam 123.

click HERE to download document on tuberculosis prevention.