Staff and students at the University of T&T’s O’Meara campus are “running scared” over a report of tuberculosis (TB) at the institution.
Staff members underwent screening on Tuesday and one of member had several more tests done yesterday.
UTT’s president Professor Sarim Al-Zubaidy in a statement to staff described the situation as “an unconfirmed case of tuberculosis (TB).”
“In order to confirm that it is indeed TB, a staff member is currently undergoing several tests,” Al-Zubaidy said.
TB is a notifiable disease and Al-Zubaidy assured that the university is working assiduously to protect staff.
“This includes making contact with the relevant health authorities to report the potential risk. These organisations are assisting UTT in managing and mitigating this situation, coordinating efforts and are also willing to provide awareness sessions for UTT staff. The key is to ‘protect, not panic’” Al-Zubaidy said.
He added that based on the test results of the staff member, other staff may need to be tested for TB.
“Please note that in the absence of any confirmation, UTT will continue to do everything necessary to protect the health and well-being of staff. The approach to this situation must be prudent, scientific and measured,” Al-Zubaidy said.
However, speaking under the condition of anonymity, a staff member said they “are scared stupid of this possible TB outbreak.” I think what should have been done is quarantine of some sort...we maybe already exposed and have other people at risk, including students and our families...our children...exams are just about to start.”
“This situation is not being handle good enough and efficient enough in terms of testing,” the staffer added.