Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

current issue

June – July 2024 : Reflections READ ONLINE


Disease hits Canada's homeless

December 08 2010
Source of flesh-eating bug still unknown

A flesh-eating disease has claimed four homeless victims in Canada, prompting health authorities to issue warnings to shelters.

The four have appeared in casualty wards in Calgary over the last two weeks, but no one shelter has been identified as the source of the disease, so authorities have had to post bulletins to all local shelters in a bid to warn their customers of the symptoms. The alerts stress that anyone suffering from fever, muscle aches, vomiting or severe pain in any one area should seek immediate medical attention.

The disease, medically termed Group A streptococcus in its initial stages and then necrotising fasciitis as it turns into the flesh-eating disease, is easily transmitted from person to person and can be fatal.

Homeless people in the Canadian town are being advised on preventative measures such as hand washing and not sharing items that have been in other people's mouths.

Previous victims of the disease in the UK who have not managed to diagnose the disease in its early stages have had arms and legs amputated, and have had long stays in hospital.