Leprosy scare at a school in Riverside

Jurupa Unified School District officials got an unconfirmed report that two students at Indian Hills Elementary School were diagnosed with leprosy.

It prompted them to send a precautionary letter to parents.

They wouldn't say where the report came from, but clarified it did not come from a doctor or the Riverside County Department of Health.

The letter also included information from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website which says leprosy is not contagious and is very treatable.

The Riverside County Department of Public Health's Barbara Cole says that it could be a couple of weeks before it gets the test results back to determine if "two students in question do or do not have leprosy."

Cole says the department is investigating the report made to its office that the students "may have symptoms" of the disease.

Cole says the tests are being sent to a "Hansen's Disease specialty lab in Baton Rouge", Louisiana.

As to reports on other media that it might be ringworm, Cole says she was asked by a reporter "could it be ringworm?" and she said it is a possibility, but the test results are not back.

Cole says she did NOT volunteer that it could ringworm, she just answered the question.

When asked, she said they have to wait for test results to determine what it is.

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