Quincy day care where student had typhoid may reopen next week

A Quincy day care will remain closed on Monday after a student was diagnosed with typhoid fever earlier this week, the day care operator said, but may open later in the week.

“We may bring in some substitute teaching staff for the children,” said Bridget Perry, a spokeswoman for Bright Horizons.

The day care center has not been shuttered by any state agency. Instead, it has been closed because teachers, as well as students, must undergo a lengthy testing process before they can return.

“It’s a staffing issue, which is why we’re not open,” Perry said.

Child care arrangements are being made for students in other classrooms at the North Quincy Bright Horizons not potentially exposed to typhoid, she said. Children at the day care center range from young infants to 5 year olds.

After the student was diagnosed earlier this week, administrators closed the center. All teachers who came in contact with the student will have to be tested, as well as any children who were in the same classroom.

Before they can return, students and teachers must pass three separate typhoid tests, 48 hours apart. The test process is lengthy because bacteria can take several days to grow inside the body.

“Testing will be going on for a while,” said Ann Scales, a spokeswoman for the Department of Public Health.

Typhoid fever can cause temperatures as high as 104 degrees and lead to weakness and severe abdominal pain. It is usually worse in children and can be fatal.

Massachusetts saw 20 cases last year, Scales said.

Typhoid fever is usually contracted overseas, and is more common in areas where sewage can contaminate water supply, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The disease is generally transmitted by food or water and can be treated with antibiotics.

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