Free sore throat checks for children most at risk of getting rheumatic fever continue to be offered at a number of local pharmacies and GP clinics.
There are 24 pharmacies and GP clinics throughout the region and with winter here, now is a good time to encourage parents and caregivers to be aware of the service which is free for children most at risk of getting the disease:
- Māori and Pacific children aged 4 to 19 who normally live in the Hutt Valley and are enrolled in a general practice in the Hutt Valley
- All other children in the Hutt Valley aged 4 to 19 with a family history of rheumatic fever
- Children aged 4 to 19 living in low socioeconomic areas of the Hutt Valley or who are living in crowded circumstances
For the contact details of the sore throat clinics, click here
Rheumatic fever is a serious yet preventable disease which causes permanent heart damage. In many cases, it starts with a sore throat that is known as ‘strep throat’ – a throat infection caused by a bacteria called Group A Streptococcus.
Most strep throats get better so long as the patient completes all the medication (antibiodics) they have been prescribed. An untreated strep throat can develop into rheumatic fever, where the heart, joints, brain and skin become inflamed and swollen.
A campaign to raise awareness about the free sore throat clinics is being run by Te Awakairangi Health Network and Tū Kotahi Māori Asthma and Research Trust with the support of our District Health Board.