Ministry of Health: Information to citizens about Streptococcus type A infection

Cases of Streptococcus infection have been observed in recent weeks in European countries

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Cases of Streptococcus infection have been observed in recent weeks in European countries such as the United Kingdom, France, Ireland. The increase in cases is beyond the expected levels. The increase mainly concerns children under the age of 10, while a small number of deaths were also recorded.

Group A Streptococcus (GAS) is a common one that many people carry on their throats and skin without showing symptoms of infection (healthy carriers). However, this particular pathogenic bacterium can in some cases cause an infection, mild or even more serious such as tonsillitis, pharyngitis, scarlet fever and infectious wax.

Serious infections associated with strep are caused by invasive group A strep (iGAS). These infections are caused when bacteria are carried to parts of the body where they are not normally detected, such as the lungs or elsewhere through the bloodstream.

Strep infection is most common in children ages 5 to 15, although it can occur in younger children and adults.

Ways of transmission

Streptococcus is transmitted mainly by direct contact with respiratory secretions through the cough and sneeze of the patient, which is particularly infectious during acute infection.

Transmission is favored in crowded places such as schools, camps, closed structures and public transport.

Incubation period

The incubation time from contact to the development of symptoms is 2-5 days.

Main symptoms

Strep infections cause various symptoms such as sore throat, fever, chills and muscle aches.


Taking antibiotic treatment following instructions from the personal physician or paediatrician.

Contact your doctor if:

• The child's symptoms are not improving

• Your child eats less than normal

• Your child shows signs of dehydration

• Your baby is under 3 months and has a temperature of 38℃ or is older than 3 months and has a temperature of 39℃ or higher

Measures to stop the spread of infection

Proper hand hygiene and strict adherence to personal protective measures are important to stop the spread.

With regard to the cases of Streptococcus infection observed in recent weeks in European countries, the Medical Services and Public Health Services of the Ministry of Health are monitoring the data and are alert for the early detection of similar cases on our island that have not been observed so far.