Stamford fifth-grader diagnosed with MRSA

A fifth-grade Stamford public school student was diagnosed with the drug-resistant staph infection known as the "superbug," Stamford health officials confirmed Tuesday.

The Stamford Health Department said it learned about the Northeast School student's case Monday evening. The school district informed parents on Tuesday that a boy contracted methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA.

Anne Fountain, of the health department, said MRSA is potentially deadly if left untreated, but it is a treatable bacteria.

"We really want to let people know what this is," Fountain said. "It's not something we haven't seen before."

School Superintendent Dr. Joshua Starr said, "We are taking every precaution necessary that our kids and our staff are in a safe, healthy environment."

The board of education held a public hearing Tuesday night, at which parents were calm about the situation.

"I think you really need to be informed about it," parent Steve Polo said. "I believe it's sort of the new West Nile scare, in a way."

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