Strep A: Scarlet fever hits school in Wales as two children are admitted to hospital

Infections of Strep A have risen across the UK.
Infections of Strep A have risen across the UK.

A total of 24 children at Brynaman Primary School in Carmarthenshire have been diagnosed with the bacterial infection

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A scarlet fever outbreak at a rural primary school has resulted in two children being admitted to hospital.

A total of 24 children at Brynaman Primary School in Carmarthenshire have been diagnosed with the bacterial infection.

Councillor Glynog Davies, cabinet member for education and Welsh language, said five schools across Carmarthenshire had scarlet fever cases of varying numbers.

He told a meeting of Carmarthenshire County Council that two children had been admitted to hospital for treatment, with one remaining at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff.

“The scarlet fever came to my attention first of all when I heard that there were many children in the local school in Brynaman were suffering from scarlet fever,” the councillor said.

“This was a big concern for me as chair of governors and also to the staff in the school. Over the last few weeks, two dozen children have suffered.

“Two of the children have had to have treatment in hospital and one is still in hospital. Scarlet fever is a very serious disease and is very infectious.”

Councillor Davies said he was concerned about reports of a shortage of antibiotics but that the council was working closely with Public Health Wales.

“We have now cases in Carmarthenshire and I know that five schools have been infected to various degrees,” he said.

“On Monday, our head teachers were briefed on this very important matter and we have shared an information letter provided by Public Health Wales about the symptoms and also how to respond.

“It’s very important that we do raise awareness about this.

“The staff in our schools are aware of this and they are keeping an eye on the situation, looking out for children with high temperature or who have a sore throat or a rash.

“If there are two or more cases in the same setting of the same school within a 10-day period, the school would have to notify the health protection team for further guidance.”

He also said a letter had been sent to parents and carers in the county and if they had concerns about their child’s health, they should contact their GP.