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5-year-old is ninth child to die from Strep A in UK outbreak

5-year-old is ninth child to die from Strep A in UK outbreak
06.12.2022
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Tributes have been paid to a five-year-old girl who died as a case of Strep A was reported at her primary school.

Stella-Lily McCorkindale became severely ill last week and was being treated at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.

The pupil at Black Mountain Primary School in Belfast died in hospital yesterday.

It described her death as a ‘tragic loss’ and said Stella-Lilly was a ‘very bright and talented little girl’ in a statement.

The school added: ‘The thoughts of the entire school are with Stella-Lily’s family and friends at this sad and difficult time.

‘Stella-Lily was a very bright and talented little girl, and very popular with both staff and children, and will be greatly missed by everyone at school.

‘To assist in supporting our pupils and staff at this sad time, additional trained staff from the Education Authority critical incident response team have been engaged and will be providing support to the school.

‘We recognise that this news may cause worry amongst our school community and we want to reassure parents that we continue to work closely with the Public Health Agency at this time.’

Parents of the youngest pupils at the school received a letter from the Public Health Agency on Friday to tell them a pupil had been diagnosed with a severe form of Strep A.

It comes as eight other schoolchildren across the UK have died of the infection over the last few weeks.

Muhammad Ibrahim Ali, aged four, died at his home on November 14 after suffering a cardiac arrest, his devastated family have said.

He attended Oakridge School and Nursery in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

Strep A infections are usually mild and can be easily treated with antibiotics.

Illnesses caused by the group A Strep bacteria include skin infection impetigo, scarlet fever and strep throat.

Symptoms of scarlet fever include sore throat, headache and fever, along with a fine, pinkish or red body rash with a ‘sandpapery’ feel.

On darker skin, the rash can be harder to see but will still feel ‘sandpapery’.

Strep A infections can develop into a more serious invasive Group A Strep (iGAS) infection – though this is rare.

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