Mid Essex CCG has reported there have been no new cases of invasive Group A Streptococcus (iGAS), caused by the outbreak strain, in mid Essex and west Essex since August 2019.
As a result the CCG, along with partners involved in the incident management including Public Health England (PHE) and Provide Community Interest Company, have taken the decision to step down the Incident Management Team and some of the control measures that have been in place since March 2019. This is in line with criteria agreed in September 2019 by all organisations involved in the Incident Management Team.
All organisations involved in managing the outbreak will remain vigilant in the coming months and will continue to assess the situation as the control measures are carefully reviewed and downgraded.
Some of the control measures will continue and others have been revised. For example, wounds of adult patients being treated by mid Essex community nursing teams will continue to be closely monitored for signs of infection and swabs taken where required to check for the bacteria. However, community nursing teams who were only working in the CM7 Braintree postcode area to minimise the risk of the infection spreading, have returned to their normal working pattern.
Rachel Hearn, Director of Nursing and Quality at Mid Essex CCG said: “We are beginning to step down the incident management and control measures following advice that there have been no new cases of invasive Group A Streptococcus (iGAS) linked to the mid Essex outbreak since August 2019.
“The safety and care of our patients and residents across mid Essex remains our first priority and we want to reassure everyone that the CCG is still working closely with partners to monitor the situation and will continue to do so.
“Our thoughts remain with the families of patients affected and those who have died as a result of iGAS.”
Last autumn Mid Essex CCG commissioned an independent investigation into the outbreak. A report from the investigation is due to be published in the spring.
For background information on the mid Essex iGAS outbreak click here.