Strep A: Family ‘traumatised’ by death of ‘bubbly’ daughter, aged just seven

There has been a rise in Strep A infections, experts have said (PA Archive)
There has been a rise in Strep A infections, experts have said (PA Archive)

The family of a “bubbly” seven-year-old girl who died of a Strep A infection have said they are devastated by their loss.

Hanna Roap, from Penarth in Wales, died from invasive Group A Streptococcal disease (iGAS), or Strep A.

Six children have died with an invasive form of the Strep A bacterial infection in recent months, according to health officals.

Her father Hasan said Hanna was “always smiling,” adding: “We’re just numb, we don’t know what to do”.

Speaking to the BBC, he said the family had been left “traumatised” by their loss.

Strep A infections are usually mild, but they can develop into a more serious illness, called invasive Group A Strep (iGAS) infection.

Mr Roap said his daughter came home from school on Thursday, November 24 with a mild cough which steadily got worse.

Her condition had not improved by the following morning so the family took her to the GP, who prescribed steroids.

“I’m not a medical professional, so I took what the GP said”, Mr Roap said.

Around 8pm that day, Hanna stopped moving, and parents immediately called an ambulance.

“I started doing CPR on this bed here, I wasn’t able to revive her,” her father said.

Within half an hour of the ambulance arriving, seven-year-old Hanna had been pronounced dead.

A large number of people came to her funeral on Friday, said Hasan, a sign of how loved his daughter was.

“They didn’t come for us, they came for her," he said.

“She was a bubbly character who was always up to mischief and it is dead silence now in the house.

“We have to remember her in the right way, but at the same time we’ve got to move forward with our hurt."

While most people do not get seriously ill from Strep A infections, the highly contagious bacteria that causes the infection can cause serious illness and complications.

Warning signs of an invasive Group A Strep (iGAS) infection can include a fever and severe muscle aches.

The UK Health Security Agency says: “Anyone with high fever, severe muscle aches, pain in one area of the body and unexplained vomiting or diarrhoea should call NHS 111 and seek medical help immediately."