LA health officials seek to contain TB outbreak

LOS ANGELES (AP) — California health officials are tracking a new tuberculosis strain that has emerged in an area of downtown Los Angeles frequented by a large concentration of homeless people.

Representatives of homeless shelters in Skid Row said Friday they are increasing efforts to alert homeless people after being contacted by state and local public health officials about a month ago.

Centers for Disease Control spokeswoman Salina Cranor says the federal health agency will be sending a team of specialists to Los Angeles next month to investigate the causes and spread of the often lethal lung infection.

Tuberculosis is a highly contagious disease spread by airborne contact such as coughing and sneezing. It is often seen in environments where people live crowded quarters such as prisons and shelters.

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