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Health Alerts

6 December 2022 - Scarlet Fever and Strep A Virus

We are seeing a higher number of cases of Group A strep this year than usual.

The bacteria usually causes a mild infection producing sore throats or scarlet fever that can be easily treated with antibiotics.

In very rare circumstances, this bacteria can get into the bloodstream (sepsis) and cause serious illness – called invasive Group A strep (iGAS).

This is still uncommon; however, it is important that parents are on the lookout for symptoms and see a doctor as quickly as possible so that their child can be treated and we can stop the infection becoming serious. 


Please see guidance on scarlet fever:


Make sure you talk to a health professional if your child is showing signs of deteriorating after a bout of scarlet fever, a sore throat, or a respiratory infection.


As a parent, if you feel that your child seems seriously unwell, you should trust your own judgement. Contact NHS 111 or your GP if:

·       your child is getting worse

·       your child is feeding or eating much less than normal

·       your child has had a dry nappy for 12 hours or more or shows other signs of dehydration

·       your baby is under 3 months and has a temperature of 38°C, or is older than 3 months and has a temperature of 39°C or higher

·       your child feels hotter than usual when you touch their back or chest, or feels sweaty

·       your child is very tired or irritable


Call 999 or go to A&E if:

·       your child is having difficulty breathing – you may notice grunting noises or their tummy sucking under their ribs

·       there are pauses when your child breathes

·       your child’s skin, tongue or lips are blue

·       your child is floppy and will not wake up or stay awake