7 elementary students stuck with hypodermic needle found on street

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. -- Seven students at a San Bernardino elementary school were stuck with a hypodermic needle that was picked up on the street and brought to school by a student.

"It could have been used, and it could have had HIV or something. It's really scary," said Robert Goggins, a parent.

Parents of students who attend Bing Wong Elementary School received an alarming letter on Friday about a 6th-grade student who found a hypodermic needle on the ground and brought it to school.

"The needle was brought out, it was passed around and some students were poked," said Maria Garcia with the San Bernardino School District.

In total, 7 students were stuck with the needle. District officials say the female student found it when she was walking to school Thursday morning. Many parents are asking why the district waited until Friday to notify them.

"They should have at least called. Other times when there's other things, they call right away," one parent said.

"The priority on Thursday afternoon was taking care of the students, making sure that those parents were notified," Garcia said. "On Thursday afternoon, we were still in the investigative phase. It wasn't until Friday morning that we felt like we had all the facts."

School officials say of the seven students who were stuck by the needle, one was taken to a hospital at the parents' request.

Dr. Felix Nunez, medical director at Molina Healthcare, says the risk of transmitting a disease is three in 1,000. However, there are many factors the parents need to consider.

"How far did the needle penetrate into the skin? Was it near a vein or an artery, so was it near a blood vessel, and then where did the needle come from? If we can figure that out that would be important as well," Nunez said.

Nunez recommends that all students who were stuck by the needle should be checked out by their family doctor or pediatrician.
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