Diagnosis and treatment of GAS pharyngitis, ARF and RHD requires contributions from all levels of the health service. Primary care clinicians and community health workers need to be able to treat sore throat, recognise ARF, deliver secondary prophylaxis and manage acute complications of RHD. In secondary and tertiary settings clinicians need to access and interpret diagnostic tests, delivery medical therapy and may need to access surgical services.
This section provides a wide range of resources for clinical staff proving care for GAS pharyngitis, ARF and RHD at all stages of disease. In 2001 the World Health Organization convened an expert panel to develop global guidelines for the management of ARF and RHD. These guidelines provide a valuable foundation for care but do not incorporate modern references from the era of wide spread echocardiography. In the absence of contemporary global guidelines, this section refers to national level guidelines where possible. Clinicians in settings without national guidelines may choose to use resources from comparable settings or begin a process of adapting existing guidelines to local circumstance.
Rheumatic heart disease
Secondary prophylaxis is the administration of antibiotics to people with a history of RF to prevent GAS infection, subsequent RF recurrence and to minimize progression to RHD.