MP Priti Patel ramps up pressure over Essex strep outbreak

Priti Patel during the annual service of remembrance at Witham War Memorial in Essex.

Priti Patel during the annual service of remembrance at Witham War Memorial in Essex. - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

MP Priti Patel has urged health chiefs to ensure appropriate resources are made available to control the outbreak of strep in Essex, which has claimed the lives of 13 people.

After another patient suffering from invasive Group A streptococcus (iGAS), commonly known as strep, was identified, bringing the total number to 34, the MP for Witham contacted both health secretary Matt Hancock and Caroline Rassell, accountable officer at the Mid Essex cliinical commissioning group (CCG).

Ms Patel said: "I am appalled by the current situation which has been ongoing for a number of weeks.

"I have been clear to the secretary of state that the Department of Health must provide the support to Mid Essex CCG and take action with regard to the situation in mid-Essex.

"I have asked him to ensure that all appropriate resources are made available to support the CCG in monitoring and controlling this outbreak."

MORE: Health officials confirm 13th death following Strep A outbreakShe has asked for a comprehensive update on the progress of the investigation from the CCG and to be sent a full list of control measures being used to contain the infection's spread across the county.

She added: "I am incredibly concerned by this situation and I want to be absolutely sure that everything possible is being done to control the outbreak and that there has been no breakdown in communication at any level in the chain dealing with this infection."

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