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Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic

Devon, UK: Scarlet Fever + Chicken Pox

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    Posted: March 16 2018 at 5:02am

School warning to parents after outbreak of TWO infectious diseases

10:55, 16 MAR 2018

A Devon school has sent letters to parents warning of an outbreak of two infectious disease among Year Five - nine and 10 year-olds.

The letters were sent by Oldway Primary School in Paignton, which has close to 700 pupils, on Friday morning.

The school has had confirmed outbreaks of both chicken pox and scarlet fever.

The letters read: "We have been made aware of a case of Scarlet Fever in your child’s year group. This has been confirmed by a doctor.

"Please be aware that this condition is most infectious before any physical signs appear. Symptoms include, sore mouth and throat, headache, high temperature and a rash.

"Pregnant ladies or anyone with concerns ought to seek medical re-assurance from their family doctor. Medical advice states that children should be kept away from school until treatment has been completed."

The second letter reads: "There has been a recent case of Chickenpox reported in your child’s year group. This is a mild illness which will get better by itself without problems. However, any pregnant women should contact their doctor for advice."

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: “Scarlet Fever is a bacterial infection that usually presents with a sore throat, fever, headaches, and a rosy rash that generally starts on a patient’s chest.

“It is very contagious disease and much more common in children under 10 than teenagers or adults, but it can be treated quickly and effectively with a full course of antibiotics and all GPs are trained to diagnose and treat it.

“Scarlet fever used to be a lot more common than it is now, but GPs are noticing more cases than in previous years at the moment. If a patient thinks that they, or their child, might have symptoms, they should seek medical assistance.

Scarlet fever is a very contagious, seasonal bacterial illness that mainly affects children and is not uncommon for this time of year.

Scarlet fever is usually a mild illness; PHE is advising parents to be on the lookout for scarlet fever symptoms, which include a sore throat, headache and fever with a characteristic fine, pinkish or red rash with a sandpapery feel. If signs of scarlet fever are suspected, it is important to contact your local GP or NHS 111.

Nick Phin, Deputy Director at Public Health England, said: “It’s not uncommon to see a rise in cases of scarlet fever at this time of year.

"Scarlet fever is not usually a serious illness and can be treated with antibiotics to reduce the risk of complications and spread to others.

"We are monitoring the situation closely and remind parents to be aware of the symptoms of scarlet fever and to contact their GP for assessment if they think their child might have it.

“Whilst there has been a notable increase in scarlet fever cases when compared to last season, greater awareness and improved reporting practices may have contributed to this increase.”

PHE is also urging GPs, paediatricians, and other health practitioners to be mindful when assessing patients and promptly notify local health protection teams of cases and outbreaks.

Source:  https:///www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/school-warning-parents-after-outbreak-1347115

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