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Scarlet fever on the increase in England

There has been a significant increase in scarlet fever cases across England, reports Public Health England (PHE).

PHE reported that there were 883 new cases of scarlet fever reported from 24-30 March, the highest weekly total since 1982.

Since September 2013 there have been 5,012 new cases reported, in comparison to an average of 1,420 cases reported for the same period in the previous 10 years. The highest number of new cases was found in the East Midlands, at 778, with London second on 520.

PHE have urged that ‘once children or adults are diagnosed with scarlet fever we strongly advise them to stay at home until at least 24 hours after the start of antibiotic treatment to avoid passing on the infection.’

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