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Last updateSat, 25 May 2019 12am







    Saturday, May 25, 2019-7:32:23P.M.






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Scarlet Fever advisory

(Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.) — There has been an increase in scarlet fever cases noted recently.

Thus far, the Public Health and Hospital Emergency Preparedness Program’s weekly surveillance report has shown eight cases of scarlet fever, whereas last year there were only two cases. Please see below for community information and guidance on scarlet fever.

What is scarlet fever?

Scarlet fever is a bacterial infection caused by Group A Streptococcus infection. This is the same type of bacteria that causes Strep throat.

Who gets scarlet fever?

Scarlet fever usually affects children between the age of 5 and 15 years old.

Is scarlet fever contagious?

Yes. The bacteria can be spread through contact with droplets from an infected person’s cough or sneeze. You can also get infected from drinking the same glass or eating from the same plate as a sick person.

What are the symptoms of scarlet fever?

  • • A very red, sore throat
  • • A fever (101° F or above)
  • • A red rash with a sandpaper feel
  • • Bright red skin in the creases of the underarm, elbow, and groin
  • • A whitish coating on the tongue
  • • A “strawberry” (red and bumpy) tongue
  • • Swollen glands in the neck

Other general symptoms include:

  • • Headache or body aches
  • • Nausea, vomiting, or abdominal pain

What should I do if my child has these symptoms?

You should keep your child at home and bring the child to see a doctor right away. The doctor might need to take a swab of the throat and test the swab for infection. If the test is positive, then the child will need to be started on antibiotics.

If my child is diagnosed with scarlet fever when can he/she return to school?

Your child is no longer infectious after being on antibiotics for at least 24 hours.

How can I prevent myself and my child from getting the infection?

There is no vaccine to prevent scarlet fever. The best ways from getting or spreading the bacteria are:

  • • Wash hands often — especially after coughing, sneezing or before preparing foods.
  • • Wash glasses, utensils and plates after someone who is sick with confirmed scarlet fever uses them. Best not to sure utensils, plates.
  • • Stay home from work, school or daycare until you no longer have a fever and have taken antibiotics for at least 24 hours

For more information, please feel free to contact CHCC at  234-8950, and ask to speak with the epidemiologist, Dr. Paul White, or the medical director of public health, Dr. Phuong Luu.