Two children, 5 and 6, from the same primary school die

Millstead Primary School in Everton
-Credit: (Image: Liverpool Echo)

Two young pupils from a Liverpool primary school have tragically died.

The head of Millstead Primary School in Everton shared that the school is "devastated" after the loss of two young students who "filled their classes with joy," Liverpool Echo reports.

It is understood by the Echo that the children were aged five and six.

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Millstead Primary has been grappling with an outbreak of Giardia, an infection being monitored by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA). The UKHSA has stated that while the exact causes of death are yet to be confirmed, they are "unlikely to be due to Giardia." It's also unclear if they were related.

Giardiasis, the illness caused by giardia parasites, affects the digestive system and can lead to diarrhoea, cramps, and bloating. Although it's usually not severe and treatable with antibiotics, the community is mourning the untimely deaths.

A UKHSA spokesperson expressed their condolences, saying: "UK Health Security Agency are aware of the sad deaths of two children who attend Millstead Primary School and our thoughts are with the family, friends and school community."

"The deaths are unlikely to be due to giardia. Giardia usually causes a self-limiting gastrointestinal illness which can spread easily in households and school settings."

Millstead School reported its Giardia outbreak last month, leading to immediate public health measures aimed at curbing the increasing number of related infections. The school, which principally caters to children with special needs, remained closed for a week in a bid to halt the growth of infections.

Emma Savage, a consultant in health protection for the UKHSA Cheshire and Merseyside Health Protection Team, mentioned: "Investigations are ongoing, and we have provided information and advice to the school and parents. Public health measures have been put in place to help prevent further cases."

People can contract giardiasis through direct contact with infected individuals or animals, ingestion of contaminated water, food or beverages. The infection typically resolves within a week after treatment, although some cases might last longer.

Good hand hygiene can prevent giardiasis - washing hands with soap and water, particularly post-toilet use and pre-food handling. Encouraging regular handwashing among children is also critical.

Additional guidance on dealing with Giardia is available at:

Millstead School's headteacher, Michelle Beard, expressed her heartbreak over the loss of two young pupils: "The entire Millstead School community is devastated to have learned of the sad recent passing of two of our younger children.

"We have sent our sincerest condolences to both of their families. Both children filled their classes with joy during their time with us, and they will forever be in our hearts.

"We are working closely with our families, staff and pupils to support them as we come to terms with this terribly sad news."

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