New Case of Diphtheria Detected at Primary School in Luton

6 months ago
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Summary: Health officials in Luton, UK are urging caution after a confirmed case of diphtheria was reported at Wigmore Primary School. The individual affected is currently undergoing treatment and recovering well. The risk of onward transmission to the wider community is low, but precautions are being taken to prevent further spread.

In recent years, cases of diphtheria have been on the rise in England. Although routine vaccinations have greatly reduced the prevalence of the disease since the 1940s, there has been a concerning decrease in the number of teenagers receiving the booster shot at age 14, leaving them vulnerable to this potentially deadly infection.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) East of England is working closely with local and national partners to implement necessary public health measures. A thorough risk assessment has been conducted to identify close contacts of the affected individual. Vaccinations and guidance will be provided to prevent the further spread of diphtheria.

Wigmore Primary School has communicated the case to parents, reassuring them that the risk to children is low. However, as a precautionary measure, the school is disseminating information and urging anyone who suspects infection to seek immediate medical attention.

Dr. Sultan Salimee, Consultant in Communicable Disease Control at UKHSA East of England, emphasized the importance of completing the course of vaccinations to protect against diphtheria. Most people in England have been immunized against the disease, making infections rare. Boosting vaccinations for close contacts who are not fully vaccinated is strongly recommended.

While the overall risk to the wider public is very low, it is essential for individuals to remain vigilant and follow recommended preventive measures. With continued efforts to increase vaccination rates, it is hoped that the prevalence of diphtheria in England can be further reduced in the coming years.…Read more by Sandeep Kunchikor

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